“Protests as Monks Are Detained”

RFA is reporting some unrest at Labrang, a traditional hot spot of Tibetan nationalist sentiment, in the wake of the self-immolation in nearby Tsoe:

“Last night, at about 10:00 p.m. local time, Chinese police entered the Tso monastery and detained monks Choephel, Sherab, and Tsondru,” a local source told RFA on Wednesday, speaking on condition of anonymity.

“Tsondru was released this morning, but at around 5:00 a.m. Chinese police in about a dozen vehicles arrived and tried to detain 17 other monks suspected of bringing Dolkar Tso to the monastery.”

Monks and local residents then mobbed the police to demand the release of those detained, the source said.

Also on Wednesday, at 1:30 p.m., about 300 monks left the large nearby monastery of Labrang Tashikyil to say prayers and offer condolences at Dolkar Tso’s family home, but were stopped by Chinese officials, the same source said.

“The officials threatened to take action against the monks and to confiscate their vehicles, but the monks left their vehicles and attempted to continue on foot to Dolkar Tso’s home,” he said.

“Staff from the monastery’s management committee came out to plead with them not to leave, and the monks then sat down in front of the gate of the Buddhist Dialectics School near the monastery and began to pray.”

A day earlier, monk Lobsang Tsultrim from the restive Kirti monastery in Ngaba (in Chinese, Aba) Tibetan prefecture died after setting himself on fire, sources said.

He succumbed to his burns at a hospital in Barkham (in Chinese, Ma’erkang) at around midnight that same day, Kanyag Tsering, a monk living at Kirti’s branch monastery in India, said, citing sources in the region.

“His body was then cremated by the Chinese and his ashes were handed over to his family,” Tsering said.

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Filed under Self-Immolation Crisis, Tibet

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