Paramilitary policemen gesture to stop a photographer from taking pictures as they stand guard after an explosives attack hit Urumqi in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region of ChinaReuters

Chinese state media has revealed that 13 people have been executed for terrorism and violent crimes in the Xinjiang region.

The 13 who were handed the death sentence were involved in seven separate cases, according to Xinhua news agency.

Elsewhere, a western Chinese court sentenced three people to death for planning a deadly car ramming in Beijing's Tiananmen Square last October, which killed five people.

The region has been beset by a number of violent attacks, which have been blamed on separatist Uighur Muslim groups.

In April, Chinese president Xi Jinping pushed the restive western region to the forefront of Beijing's counter-terrorism efforts.

"The situation is grim and complicated. The local-level police stations are fists and daggers," Xi told police.

"You must have the most effective means to deal with violent terrorists. Sweat more in peacetime to bleed less in wartime," he continued.