The Baren Township Riot was a riot and armed confrontation that took place in April of 1990. On April 5, 1990, in Kizilsu's Akto County and in the town of Baren, Zeydun Yusup, a member of the East Turkistan Islamic Party led 200 men to protest. They marched to the local government office and demanded an end to the mass immigration of Han Chinese into Xinjiang. Zeydun Yusup said that they must fight and kick out the Chinese invaders from East Turkistan.
The initial response of the Chinese government was to send in 500 troops to stop the demonstrations. The Uyghur fighters captured several hundred rifles, and thousands of rounds of ammunition. On April 6, 1990, the Chinese government sent in 4,000 well-equipped People's Liberation Army soldiers. By the end of April 6, 1990, over 18,000 Chinese troops had been dispatched to crush the resistance. It was noted at the time that the population of Baren was 19,000.
The conflict ended on April 10, 1990, costing the lives of 107 Uyghur fighters and the capture of 289 fighters. It was said that 1,600 Uyghur fighters and Chinese soldiers were killed in the 5 days of conflict. Over 7,900 Uyghurs were arrested following the crackdown on "criminal activities of ethnic splittists and other criminal offenders."  Though an official account of civilian casualties is absent, exiles and participants in the event claimed that several thousand civilians had died with thousands more wounded.