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Sharp drop in attendance at Xinjiang tourist spot's photography festival

A photography festival in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region's tourist drawcard, Kanas, opened Tuesday but with a sharp drop in attendance, local authorities said.

The 9th International Kanas Autumn Photography Festival reported an attendance of only 800, a drastic drop from last year's 5,000, said Kang Jian, the local official in charge of the festival.

"Photography is a bridge where people can learn about Kanas and Xinjiang," he said.

Kanas, a national geological park, almost 1,000 kilometers north of Urumqi, capital of Xinjiang, is home to a range of landscapes, including the Kanas Lake, China's deepest alpine lake; snow-capped mountains and grasslands.

(Xinhua News Agency September 16, 2009)