DHARAMSHALA, December 12: A rare video footage smuggled out from Tibet shows the alarming level of repression and heavy-handed police brutality that Tibetans suffer under China’s occupation.
In the 22-minute video
, around 100 Chinese security personnel, armed with automatic guns and accompanied by armoured vehicles can be seen raiding a small mountainous village. In the snow cover, the security personnel are seen moving in attack formations, breaking into homes and dragging Tibetans out, some of them even without their clothes on.
Although, there are no visible signs of retaliation or attempts at escape by the men and one elderly woman who are arrested, the heavily armed Chinese security officials are seen kicking, punching and forcing the Tibetans to kneel down on the snow. In their unsolicited show of brutal force, the Chinese security personnel can be seen aiming guns at the faces of the Tibetans while they are forced to look into the camera and say their name and age.
The video, which is most likely an internal military video, doesn’t mention the exact location and date of the raid but exile Tibetans believe it could be from the year 2008 when widespread uprisings rocked the entire Tibetan plateau. The village is believed to be somewhere near Lhasa, the capital of Tibet.
Speaking to Phayul, Jamphel Monlam, a senior researcher at the Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy (TCHRD) noted that three Tibetans with similar names as in the video were in 2008 sentenced to prison terms for taking part in the peaceful uprisings.
The researcher, who was formerly a political prisoner, condemned the Chinese government for their brutality and inhumanly treatment of the Tibetans as depicted in the video.
"According to the law, during arrests, the Chinese security personnel are at the least required to carry an arrest warrant and follow established procedures of arrest, but in the video we can clearly see how brutal and lawless they are in dealing with Tibetans," said Jamphel.
"This is the real face of China, no matter how rosy an image they want to create in front of others".
Thubten Samphel, the Secretary of the Department of Information and International Relations of the Central Tibetan Administration told Phayul that the video footage itself provides ample evidence of the human rights abuse that Tibetans suffer in their daily lives.
“The individual who risked his or her own life in smuggling this video out of Tibet has done a great service to the Tibetan people,” Samphel said.
“This is a great contribution to the struggle of the Tibetan people.”