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Death toll in Urumqi rises to 192

URUMQI, China, July 15 (UPI) -- China raised the death toll in the Urumqi violence to 192 people and said 810 injured in the July 5 ethnic riots remained hospitalized.

The rise in the toll had been expected as authorities had earlier said many of the critically injured were near death. The previously announced death toll was 184, of whom more than 130 were Han Chinese, authorities said.

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The violence in the capital of China's northwest Xinjiang-Uighur region has been blamed on a separatist group representing Muslim Uighurs in the region. While the group has denied the charge, racial tensions between the Muslims and Han Chinese have simmered for years as Muslims resent being ruled by the Han.

Urumqi authorities said 25 of the 810 still hospitalized were in critical condition, Xinhua reported.

The People's Daily, the mouthpiece of the ruling Chinese Communist party, stressed the need for unity among all ethnic groups in China.

"As a country of multiple nationalities, the idea of national unity is the basic foundation for the safety of all ethnic people, and it is also the great power that keeps Chinese civilization going on and on," the newspaper said in a commentary.

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"The ultimate interest of Chinese nationality won't tolerate any violation, and the common will of 1.3 billion Chinese people will be as firm as always."

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