BEIJING, July 13 (Xinhua) -- The head of the separatist World Uygur Congress Rebiya Kadeer has been mocked by netizens for her remarks about the deadly July 5 riot in Urumqi that left 184 dead.
An article "The Real Uygur Story" by Kadeer, posted on the Wall Street Journal website, online.wsj.com, on July 8, told her version of the violence. She claimed "hundreds of Uygurs are now dead for exercising their right to protest", or in what she called a "peaceful assembly".
"She is like thousand miles from the epic center. How can she know the real story?" questioned Siu Tsang, in a comment forum linked to the article, on Saturday.
"Maybe indeed she had special channels to the Uygur area and is the mastermind behind the mob killing..." Tsang said.
"I did not know who this woman was, but after reading her so called opinion on the WSJ, I now believe that it is highly plausible this woman could be the mastermind behind the riots," said T. J. Chen in the same forum.
"... I just cannot get over the eerie feeling it was written before the riots took place," Chen said.
Kadeer was jailed in 1999 on charges of harming national security in China. She left for the United States shortly after she was released on bail in 2005. She is now leader of the World Uygur Congress, which has close contact with terrorist organizations.
She was once the richest woman in Xinjiang and was named by Forbes in 1995 as the eighth richest on the Chinese mainland. She also served as a member of National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), the top advisory body of the country.
In her article, Kadeer claimed "years of Chinese repression of Uygurs" was the cause of the current Uygur "discontent".
But a post by Benchi Sun in the forum refuted the accusation with "a few interesting facts" that he found after watching an interview with Kadeer.
"She (Kadeer) had 11 children, which confirms that Uygurs were not subject to China's one-child policy," Sun said in his post.
"She was born to a family with no background. She started her business with a roadside convenience store and worked her way to the richest person in Xinjiang. This proved Uygurs can earn their business success through hard work," the netizen continued.
He also cited Kadeer's experience as a member of CPPCC National Committee to show that Uygurs were not excluded from political life in the country.
"The author should stop telling lies. You know, God is always fair, no matter which God you believe in. God will punish those who tell lies. Can we agree on this?" the post said.
In her article, Kadeer used "East Turkestan" to refer to Xinjiang.
"If Rebiya Kadeer did not have separatist intentions, why does she use 'East Turkestan' as the name of the province and not the Chinese name Xinjiang?" said Tony Tan in the same forum.
Kadeer mentioned "China's heavy-handed reaction to Sunday's protest. But it was criticized by readers with hard facts.
"Real??? Are you kidding? Don't ignore the fact that the so-called protesters killed 156 innocent people, including Han and Uygur," said another post entry by Bridget Ch, before the latest death toll, 184, was announced Saturday by the Xinjiang regional government.
"It is not a demonstration, but a bloody massacre. Criminals must be punished," the post said.
The riot has also left 1,680 injured, and hundreds of vehicles and shops vandalized and looted and other public facilities destroyed. The regional government said Saturday among the dead, 137 were Han and 46 were Uygur.
In a Tuesday interview with Al Jazeera, Kadeer showed a testimonial photo which purported to show "peaceful Uygur protesters" in Urumqi and how they were treated by the police. The photo was later found to be cropped from a Chinese news website image on an unrelated June 26 protest in Shishou, Hubei Province.
"This untruthful woman likes to put herself in the spotlight. But she should bear in mind that more public appearances will only bring her more shame, if she continues to lie," said a Chinese netizen named "nineteen years of knife for killing cows" in a forum.
Special Report: Urumqi Riot