China arrests 5 people for Tiananmen Square terror attack
Beijing: Chinese police on Wednesday arrested five people for involvement in a suicide attack at the iconic Tiananmen Square here that was carried out by an Islamist militant along with his wife and mother, the first major terror incident in Beijing.
The breakthrough in the probe came as Beijing police captured the five suspects with the cooperation of authorities including those in northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region that borders PoK and Afghanistan.
The car crash incident at the Tiananmen Square in the heart of the capital is still shrouded in mystery as details of Monday's attack remain sketchy.
The attack was "carefully planned, organised and premeditated," a spokesman with the Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau said.
Significantly, the attack was carried by a family of three hailing from the troubled Muslim Uyghur majority Xinjiang, which has witnessed several terror incidents recently.
Usmen Hasan, his mother, Kuwanhan Reyim, and his wife, Gulkiz Gini, drove a Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) with a Xinjiang plate to crash into a crowd of people on October 28 killing two people and injuring another 40, the spokesman said.
The two people killed included a Philippine female tourist and a male tourist from south China's Guangdong Province.
The three people in the SUV died after they set gasoline on fire, the spokesman said.
The vehicle which burst into flames after crashing into the railing of the entrance of the Forbidden City, home of successive Chinese ruling dynasties, carried containers filled with gasoline, besides knives and iron bars, state-run CCTV reported. The SUV was reportedly chased by police cars.
Earlier media reports said police were looking for eight suspects all from Xinjiang. The SUV carried a flag and displayed extremist slogans.
Monday's attack was their biggest outside Xinjiang.
Some tourists said they heard an explosion. Also the car went up in flames near the life-size picture of the ruling Communist Party founder Mao Zedong, which however remained intact.
The imposing Forbidden City overlooks the Tiananmen Square, one of the largest of its kind in the world measuring up to the size of several football fields.