This week's deadly car explosion in Beijing that police say was a suspected terrorist attack on China's capital city has a number of significant repercussions, analysts say.
The main reasons for concern: the attack could set a dangerous precedent; it highlights the symbolic value of targeting Beijing and could undermine confidence in the world's second biggest economy if there are further such incidents.
On Monday, a SUV crashed into pedestrians in Tiananmen Square, a site of huge political and historic significance in China, killing the three car occupants, two tourists and injuring about 38 people.
Authorities suspect the crash may have been a suicide attack by people from Xinjiang in far west China and detained five suspects on Wednesday in connection to the incident, according to media reports.
"The attack is significant for a number of reasons despite the small number of fatalities," analysts at the Asia-Pacific Foundation, International Policy Assessment Group, said in a note published Thursday.
"Firstly, the attack illustrated the symbolic value of targeting the Chinese leadership in the heart of the capital of China. Secondly, it is also a very popular place for tourists to frequent and the attack would have been designed to undermine confidence that Beijing is a safe place to visit," they said.