Uncertainty was still stalking the streets of Urumqi, in western China, Friday morning despite heavy security and patrolling helicopters in the sky in the wake of a wave of hypodermic needle stabbings and massive protests.
Helicopters were seen hovering over the city Friday morning, the second time here since the July 5 riot that left 197 people dead.
"I bought a lot of food today. Who knows what will happen next," said Luo Huanzhang, who just returned from a regular morning outdoor market on the Guangming Road.
The market was crowded and many people intended to stock up groceries, Luo said. Residents also keep their forays into public places short.
"I don't know whether I should go to work," said an employee with the Xinjiang branch of China Life Insurance (Group) Company, who only offered his surname of Tang.
Traffic controls imposed at 9 p.m. Thursday banned vehicles on major roads in downtown areas such as Youhao Road, Guangming Road and Renmin Square.
People have to walk or cycle, but many chose to stay at home.
Bedclothes seller Chen, 28, said she closed her shop on Wednesday as protests against the needle attacks people flared up.