Tibetan self-immolator Tsering Dhondup in an undated photo.
DHARAMSHALA, November 20: In more alarming reports coming out of Tibet another Tibetan set himself on fire today in Amchok region of eastern Tibet in an apparent protest against China’s continued occupation of Tibet.
Tsering Dhondup, 35, set himself ablaze on a ground near the entrance of a mining site in Amchok region of Labrang Sangchu at around 8:30 am (local time). He succumbed to his injuries at the site of his protest.
Speaking to Phayul, Ajam Amchok, an exile Tibetan with close contacts in the region said Tsering Dhondup is survived by his wife Tamding Tso, their three children, and his parents Lubhum Gyal and Drukmo Tso.
“Martyr Tsering Dhondup set himself ablaze at the Gyagar Thang near the entrance of a mine in Amchok this morning,” Ajam said. “He passed away in his self-immolation protest.”
“Local Tibetans say Tsering Dhondup was a good natured and a lovable person,” the same source added. “He felt strongly for Tibet and always showed concern for the welfare of the Tibetan people.”
According to latest reports, monks of the Amchok Monastery and local Tibetans have started to gather to offer their last respects.
Tsering Dhondup’s fiery protest adds to the alarming escalation in self-immolations being witnessed in Tibet. Already, 16 Tibetans have set themselves on fire in the month of November.
Charred body of Tibetan self-immolator Tsering Dhondup who passed away in his fiery protest against China's rule on November 20, 2012.
78 known Tibetans inside Tibet, including monks and nuns, young mothers and students, artists and writers, farmers and nomads, have self-immolated since 2009, demanding freedom and the return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama from exile.
The Dalai Lama recently told reporters that China’s repressive policies and the unbearable situation in Tibet are forcing Tibetans to set themselves of fire in Tibet.
"The unbearable situation in Tibet is the cause for these unfortunate events. I am very sad about the turn of events. These are symptoms of fear, hard line suppressive policy practiced by China in Tibet. The time has come for China to think more realistically," reporters quoted the Tibetan spiritual leader as saying.
The exile Tibetan administration has maintained that the reasons for the self-immolations are self-evident: political repression, economic marginalisation, environmental destruction, and cultural assimilation. .
“The blame and solution for the present tragedy in Tibet lies entirely with Beijing,” Sikyong Dr Lobsang Sangay, the elected head of the Tibetan people, said earlier this month. “We firmly believe that an end to repression will effectively end the cycle self-immolation.”