Posts tagged ‘Self-immolation’


* Tibetan students protest, as four more self-immolations reported

China needs to rethink its policy on Tibet. The issue of autonomy is not going to go away. Unlike the Muslim Uighurs, who are mainly domiciled in Xinjiang, Tibetans reside in large numbers in at least four provinces of which Tibet is only the main one.

BBC: “A crowd of Tibetan students has protested in Qinghai province, activists say, as four more self-immolations were reported.

A man taking a photograph in front of a screen displaying propaganda about China's Tibet Autonomous Region in Beijing, 12 November 2012

Reports said more than 1,000 students took part in the protest, which was reportedly provoked by the contents of a book.

Twenty students were in hospital, media reports and activist groups said.

The four self-immolations, meanwhile, occurred in Gansu, Sichuan and Qinghai provinces on Sunday and Monday.

Foreign media are banned from Tibetan regions, making reports of protests and self-immolations hard to verify independently. Chinese state media reports some of the protests and burnings but not all.

The student protest took place on Monday in Gonghe county in Qinghai province, London-based Free Tibet said.”

via BBC News – Tibetan students protest, as four more self-immolations reported.


* Surge in Tibetan self-immolations challenges Chinese rule-rights group

Reuters: “As many as five Tibetans set themselves ablaze in China in the past week to protest Chinese rule over Tibet, a U.S. broadcaster said, a surge highlighted by a rights group as a sustained campaign against Beijing’s grip on religious freedom.

Two self-immolations on Monday in the Aba prefecture, a mountainous and mainly ethnic Tibetan part of Sichuan province, were followed by at least one clash between police and ethnic Tibetans that left one protester dead, Radio Free Asia said.

Lungtok, a monk from the restive Kirti monastery in Aba, and Tashi, believed to be a layman, set themselves ablaze on Monday “to highlight their opposition to Chinese rule in Tibetan-populated areas”, Radio Free Asia reported, saying three other Tibetans have died in self-immolations in the past week in China.

Many Tibetans have called for Beijing to allow the return of the Dalai Lama, their self-exiled Buddhist leader. China has branded the self-immolators “terrorists” and criminals and has blamed the Dalai Lama, for inciting them.

Calls to the Aba prefecture office were not answered.

Phelim Kine, senior Asia researcher for New York-based Human Rights Watch, said the frequency of the Tibetan self-immolations is “a reflection of the ever-deepening frustration and despair” that many Tibetans feel about hopes for reform and protection for their culture, religion and language.

“We don’t see any inkling of such changes in the short to medium term, instead we see a hardening of position by the Chinese government,” he said. “This is an unfortunate trend that will continue till we head into the leadership transition.”

Chinese leaders typically clamp down on possible sources of unrest before a once in a decade congress, likely in October, to announce a new leadership team.”

via Surge in Tibetan self-immolations challenges Chinese rule-rights group | Reuters.

Tibet (and Xinjiang) continue to be sore point with China. Religious and ethnic self-determination doesn’t want to go away, despite the efforts by China to improve the social and economic conditions.

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* Tibetan men in first self-immolations in Lhasa

BBC News: “Two men set themselves on fire in the Tibetan city of Lhasa on Sunday, Chinese state media said, confirming earlier reports. One of the men died and the other “survived with injuries”, Xinhua news agency said.

The self-immolations are thought to be the first in Lhasa and the second inside Tibet. But they follow a series of self-immolations, mostly involving monks and nuns, in Tibetan areas outside Tibet. “They were a continuation of the self-immolations in other Tibetan areas and these acts were all aimed at separating Tibet from China,” Hao Peng, head of the Communist Partys Commission for Political and Legal Affairs in the Tibet Autonomous Region, was quoted as saying.”

via BBC News – Tibetan men in first self-immolations in Lhasa.

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