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People's Daily calls for ethnic unity in Xinjiang

BEIJING, June 2 --The flagship newspaper of the Communist Party of China (CPC) will carry a commentary on Tuesday, calling for more efforts to consolidate the ethnic unity in Xinjiang.

The People's Daily said in the commentary by quoting Chinese President Xi Jinping's speech in the second central work conference on Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region that ethnic unity is the lifeline of all ethnic groups and the footstone for development and progress.

The conference was held in the wake of a series of bloody terrorist attacks in the region, including one in an open air market in Urumqi, the region's capital, which left 39 people dead and 94 injured on May 20.

The commentary called for cadres and masses in Xinjiang to cherish ethnic unity the same way they do to their eyes because "ethnic unity is like the air and the sun, from which you benefit but you never feel it."

"The more ethnic separatists wanted to break the bond of ethnic unity, the more we need to protect it," said the commentary, quoting a call circulating on WeChat, a popular Chinese instant messaging service, that "people of all ethnic groups should stick together like pomegranate seeds."

It said the ethnic regional autonomy system should be upheld as always, and other policies of the CPC should also be implemented unswervingly. "Every ethnic group and every citizen should contribute its share to realize the Chinese dream and they also stand a chance to share the fruits of development."

The commentary called for more communication and various forms of exchange among different ethnic groups, including the promotion of bilingual education and more integrated social structure and community environment where people are not grouped solely based on their ethnicity.

It also said that the authorities should encourage more people from minority ethnic groups to receive eduction, work or live in other parts of the country to enhance understanding and solidify unity.

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