“Monks, Nuns Abandon Monasteries”

The media lockdown and communications barriers are keeping Ngaba and Kardze in the dark, but some news is still getting out of Tibet province. From RFA:

Monks and nuns have abandoned their monasteries in a Central Tibetan county, preferring to leave rather than submit to “intrusive” new Chinese regulations, according to Tibetan sources.

The exodus over the last two months comes amid an increasing crackdown by Chinese authorities following Tibetan protests highlighting rights abuses and unprecedented self-immolations mostly by monks fed up with increasing religious curbs.

“The monks and nuns have already left” their monasteries in Driru county in the Nagchu prefecture of the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR), a Tibetan living in Australia said, speaking on condition of anonymity and citing sources in the region.

He named Driru, Pekar, Choeling, Tagmo, and Drongna monasteries, and Jana, a nunnery, as the affected facilities.

“All who were not willing to live under the strict restrictions imposed by Chinese [authorities] chose to leave,” he said.

Meanwhile, sources said, posters and leaflets calling for freedom for Tibet and the return of exiled spiritual leader the Dalai Lama appeared on Jan. 25 at Ragya monastery in the Golog prefecture of China’s Qinghai province.

“Police could not identify the persons responsible, and later threatened to close the monastery,” India-based Tibetan exile Ragya Lowang said, citing sources in the region.

Monks had earlier displayed a large photo of the Dalai Lama and the banned Tibetan national flag in the main hall of the monastery, prompting an investigation by Chinese authorities, Ragya Lowang said.

There’s also some chatter on Twitter about a number of Tibetan-language sites hosted in China being closed by the government. I suppose the excuse is probably that ‘anti-China forces’ might be communicating over these sites, but I wonder if closing them will actually do anything other than throw yet another straw on the yaks back.

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Filed under ethnic conflict, protests, religion, Tibet

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