Assailants threw explosives and attacked people with knives in northwestern China’s volatile Xinjiang region, killing four people in what local authorities called a terrorist attack, state news reported Saturday.
The attack happened Friday on a street in Xinjiang’s Shache County at about 1:30 p.m., according to the state-run Xinhua news agency.
Police who were patrolling nearby killed 11 of the attackers, who the Xinhua report characterized as “mobsters.” At least 14 people injured in the violence were taken to local hospitals.
The report did not say who the attackers were or describe a motive.
Xinjiang is no stranger to attacks on civilians. The region has been the scene of ethnic strife between the indigenous Uyghurs, a mainly Turkic-speaking Muslim population, and Han Chinese.
For instance, a suicide bombing in May killed 39 people at a street market in the region’s capital, Urumqi. The Chinese government has blamed recent violent incidents in Xinjiang on Uyghur separatists seeking to establish an independent state.