China will beef up security and attach great importance to combating terrorist activities before the opening of the 19th Communist Party of China National Congress, to be held later this year, the Ministry of Public Security said on Thursday.
According to the ministry, public security departments will conduct a six-month special action aimed at preventing violence and terrorist attacks and ensuring social safety and stability.
Police "have taken effective measures to fight against a variety of sabotage and destruction activities conducted by hostile forces," said Guo Shengkun, minister of public security.
"We will stay on high alert for terrorist attacks and pay attention to obtaining intelligence to prevent such crimes," he said. "We will maintain high pressure and take severe measures against terrorist attacks, resolutely eliminating them during the planning stage and stopping them before any action occurs."
In recent years, a series of violent and terrorist attacks have occurred at home and abroad, causing hundreds of casualties and property losses, posing a serious risk to people's lives and property.
Guo said police will focus on setting up a comprehensive information center to collect intelligence and analyze statistics concerning violence and terrorist attacks, while accelerating the application of advanced technology to improve work efficiency and combat capability.
According to the ministry, police will tighten the security management and strengthen patrols and preventive measures in some key areas, including airports, railways, subway stations, shopping malls and entertainment venues.
Moreover, they will carry out a special action to combat the manufacture and trafficking of guns and other dangerous items that could be used to produce explosives. Police also will keep a close eye on logistics and express services, according to Guo.
"We should conduct in-depth investigations of the existing problems and security gaps and strengthen risk assessment and emergency response to resolve conflicts and risks in a timely manner. Then we should ensure overall stability of social security," he said.
Mei Jianming, director of the Counterterrorism Research Center at People's Public Security University of China, said China should draw some lessons from previous violent and terrorist accidents, then improve a quick-response mechanism to prevent similar attacks in the future.
He said it's more than necessary to establish a national intelligence-sharing platform to help law enforcement officers "obtain and analyze various terrorist-related clues, then effectively deploy different forces, including armed police and soldiers, to smash criminal gangs."