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Marchers arrested near Tibet-Nepal border -updated
Phayul[Tuesday, July 01, 2008 15:55]
By Tenzin Sangmo

The peace marchers coming down from a mountain towards the main road. (Photo by Thupten/RFA)
The peace marchers coming down from a mountain towards the main road. (Photo by Thupten/RFA)
New Delhi, July 1 - The forty two Tibetan marchers who left Kathmandu in the wee hours of the morning six days ago have been apprehended by Nepalese police officials some seven kilometers from Dram.

The peace marchers had shed their cover of mountainous trails and jungle routes by walking in the open on the main road leading towards the Tibet-Nepal border earlier today. This made them vulnerable to possible police blockade. After walking on the highway for some four kilometers their path was blocked by the police who insisted they retreat. With the border well within reach the peace hikers/walkers were forced to end their march to Tibet.

Though pro-Tibet rallies have taken the world by storm after the March unrest with Nepal in the lead given its close proximity to China, this is the first protest of its kind in the region where Tibetan refugees have attempted to take the same route to Tibet which many of them have once tread to escape a brutal regime.

Talking to Phayul on the phone from the Barabesi check post where they are currently held, core marcher Jamyang Tenzin said, "We were about seven kilometers from Dram when some 30-40 Nepalese police officials blocked our way and detained us. We are being taken back to Kathmandu and the officers have not disclosed what will become of us once in the Capital or whether we will be charged with any offence. The officers did not use any physical force or treat us violently this time around."

(Photo by Thupten/RFA)
(Photo by Thupten/RFA)
In what could be termed as a continuing chapter in their peaceful resistance against China, a small group of nine Tibetans left Kathmandu on their mission to Tibet on June 27. The second group comprising of one monk, a twenty year old girl and others left the Nepalese Capital at 04:00 am that day and traveled 200 kilometers by vehicle to avoid police opposition in and around Kathmandu. They have since covered 90 kilometers on foot and are traversing through the hilly and steep tracks which their predecessors navigated not many days ago. They choose to remain tight lipped about their location and the Tibet-Nepal border which they intend to cross over into in the coming days.

Kelsang Tashi from the second group says, "Given the harsh physical conditions of the climb and the rocky path which some of us are not used to, we anticipate to reach the border in the next ten days. Unlike other marches, we have to carry our own luggage and sleeping bags among other utilities. The extra effort clubbed with severe challenges presented before us during the course of the walk slow us down but we remain adamant nonetheless and will strive to succeed in our endeavor."

Tibetans across the world aim to protest peacefully until peace is restored in Tibet and a resolution is put across through significant talks between envoys of the Dalai Lama and China. The seventh round of official dialogue between the two parties began today in Beijing.

Updated: The arrested marchers were transfered to Mahendra police club in Katmandu from where they were released later in the evening.

(Photo by Thupten/RFA)
(Photo by Thupten/RFA)
(Photo by Thupten/RFA)
(Photo by Thupten/RFA)
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all tibetan go to border (moondawa)
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