BEIJING, March 12 (UPI) -- China, pointing to terrorism threats in its western Xinjiang Uygur region, has called on the rest of the world to pool its efforts to eliminate the problem.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang told reporters Tuesday terrorism is the public enemy of the international community, Xinhua reported.
China's appeal follows a recent report that Chinese authorities had foiled a plane hijack terror plot in Xinjiang autonomous region that might have targeted the upcoming Beijing Olympics.
"On the issue of terrorism, the international community should speak in one voice and form synergy to firmly strike terrorism," Qin was quoted as saying.
Xinhua said his remarks were in response to some human rights groups' assertion that China was exaggerating terrorism threats in the province.
Qin said the ETIM has been listed by the United Nations as a terrorist organization. ETIM is the East Turkestan Islamic Movement, which reportedly wants an independent Islamic state of East Turkestan for the region's 8 million Uygur Muslims.
Qin said those who criticize China's efforts to fight terrorism in Xinjiang have ulterior motives.
"These people are trying to sow dissension among the Han nationality and the Uygur nationality, trying to incite conflict between the two nationalities," he said.