On March 11, 2008, China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Qin Gang rejected the claim of an Uyghur dissident that Chinese authorities are trying to use the Olympics Games as a pretext to suppress the Uyghurs. Qin said that the dissidents are sowing discord between the Han and Uyghur people to incite ethnic conflicts and that they will not succeed. Earlier, Xinhua reported that the Uyghurs allegedly had attempted two air attacks directed at the Olympic Games.
"The real goal of the Chinese government is to organize a terrorist attack so that it can increase its crackdown on the Uyghur people," Rebiya Kadeer, the 61-year-old head of the Uyghur American Association said.
Source, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, March 11, 2008.