China Blames Muslim Separatist Group for Tiananmen Attack
China's domestic security chief has blamed a Muslim Uighur separatist group for planning a "violent terrorist incident" this week on Beijing's Tiananmen Square that killed five people and injured dozens of others.
Meng Jianzhu, a member of the 25-member Politburo with responsibility for domestic security, said Friday that the incident had been organized by the East Turkestan Islamic Movement.
The U.N. has classified the ETIM as a terrorist group based in the northwest region of Xinjiang.
Beijing says the deadly Monday car crash in Tiananmen Square was a suicide mission planned by religious extremists. Police say a Uighur man named Usmen Hasan crashed a vehicle carrying his mother and wife into a crowd of people in the square, before lighting the car on fire. All three died at the scene, as did two tourists. Dozens were wounded.
Officials say they found gasoline, knives, steel sticks and a flag with extremist religious content inside the burnt-out vehicle. They also arrested five people from Xinjiang, who were said to be planning attacks with Hasan.
Indonesia Summons Australian Ambassador Over US Spying Allegations
Indonesia has summoned the Australian ambassador in Jakarta following reports indicating that Australia has allowed covert U.S. surveillance programs to operate in its embassies in Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, China and East Timor.
The news reports, based on documents leaked by former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden, also said that the U.S. Embassy in Jakarta was used for spying on its president, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and other Indonesian leaders. They indicate the U.S. embassy houses wiretapping equipment that has been used to monitor other Indonesian leaders. The documents describe the facilities as carefully concealed within embassy compounds.
After the meeting Friday, Australian diplomat Greg Moriarty said only that he talks had been good and he now had to report back to his government.
The Indonesian Foreign Ministry has also summoned America's top diplomat in Jakarta to clarify the allegations.