China offers cash to tourist who visit restive Xinjiang
The Chinese government offers 500 yuan (80 dollar) bonuses to travellers willing to visit troubled Xinjiang region, after a series of terrorist attacks linked to separatists rebels.
Local authorities seek to boost tourism, after a 40% fall in the number of visitors arriving in the far western region, known for its beautiful landscapes with mountains, desert oasis towns and ancient ruins.
In March, a knife attack on a train station in the southwestern city of Kunming killed 33. Since then, other two major strikes have shaken the region. On April 30 three people died and 79 were injured in a second knife attack and last week suicide bombers killed 39 and wounded 94 in a busy street market in Urumqi, the region’s capital.
“Many tourists went skiing and skating in Xinjiang during the winter. But since the deadly knife attack in Kunming in March, many have postponed their tour to Xinjiang,” the region’s tourism chief Inam Nesirdi was quoted by the radio as saying.
"The terrorist incident in Kunming in March and the attacks in Xinjiang have affected tourism considerably. Many people have suspended their trips to Xinjiang," Nesirdi said.