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Clash in East Turkistan, 27 dead

Gangs armed with knives attacked a police station and a local government building on Wednesday in East Turkistan, (aka Uyghur Autonomous Region of China), leaving 27 dead in clashes with police, the government news agency Xinhua said. Xinhua said Wednesday's unrest erupted at about 6 a.m. in the remote township of Lukqun, about 200 km (120 miles) southeast of Urumqi. Gangs attacked Lukqun's police stations, the local government building and a construction site, stabbing people and setting fire to police vehicles, Xinhua quoted regional Communist Party officials as saying. Nine policemen and security guards and eight civilians were killed before police shot dead 10 of the attackers, Xinhua quoted the officials as saying. The reasons for the attacks were not immediately clear. Mmany Uighurs, Muslims who speak a Turkic language, chafe at what they call Chinese government restrictions on their culture, language and religion.

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