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Survivors speak out against UK website's fake report on Urumqi riot
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17:08, July 30, 2009

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A mother and her daughter who survived rioters' attack in the July 5 violence in northwest China's Urumqi City had denounced a UK website report, which had wrongly blamed their sufferings on Chinese riot police.

Pictures on the website of London Evening Standard on July 7 showed Gao Wenhong and her daughter Yang Shuya standing in a street in Urumqi, holding each other's arms and soaked in blood with terror in eyes.

The captions read "Women fought with riot police as fresh protests broke out in China's volatile Xinjiang province today" and "Blood and defiance: two women comfort each other after being attacked by police."

"We were shocked at the wrong information provided by the website," said Gao on Tuesday at her house in Jichang City. "Actually, we were trying to seek help from police after being attacked by the rioters."

"I have to keep myself busy everyday to forget the nightmare," she said. "I felt I was hurt again by the report."

Gao said she and nine other family members were visiting her daughter in the People's Hospital in Urumqi that night, as her daughter was to receive a heart operation the next day.

The family was having dinner in a nearby restaurant and suddenly they saw rioters throw stones at policemen. When they attempted to hurry back to the hospital, they were attacked.

"The rioters, most of them 20-year-old something, yelled at us and hit my head with fists before I lost my consciousness," Gao recalled with tears in eyes.

One of Gao's elder sisters was beaten to death at the scene and all the others were injured in the violence.

The daughter Yang said she was dragged out from underneath a car where she hid herself before she was beaten by the rioters.

"The pictures showed the moment when my mother touched my blood-covered face and tried to persuade me out of crying," she said.

"It is the underlying principle for every news organization to respect facts. I never expected the Westerners, who I thought were civilized and honored human rights, would hurt us with such irresponsible and vicious slanders," Yang said. "It's too hard to accept it."


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