By Tenzin Monlam
DHARAMSHALA, October 15: The Chinese authorities on Wednesday have detained two more Tibetans in connection with a petition over confiscated land in Dzoege County in Ngaba Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture. The two are currently held in police custody at Marthang County.
“Rinchen Dorje, 63, and Magyuk, 56, were summoned by authorities to the county center around noon on Wednesday for interrogation and then taken into custody,” a source told RFA on condition of anonymity.
“The two were among those who originally presented a written appeal to the county and prefecture authorities for the resolution of a land dispute,” the source added.
According to another source, the relatives of the detained Tibetans were later informed about the detentions. He said, “The authorities also informed their families that they are being held in Marthang County and that clothing should be provided for them,” the source said.
The seizure of rural land for profitable property deals by local governments triggers thousands of mass incidents across China every year, which results in violent suppression and detention of protestors.
Last month on September 22, the Chinese authorities detained around a dozen Tibetans in Thangkor Town for reoccupying land taken from them five years ago for a 'supposedly' government project on environmental conservation.
On October 2, the police freed five of the ten Tibetans arrested with the rest still in the police custody. However, a source revealed that three of the five who remained in custody had since been released.
“Jigje Kyab and Phurgur are still in detention… so at present there are [at least] four Tibetans still being held, including the two detained on Wednesday,” the source said.
Jigje Kyab, the appeal organizer, was reportedly missing at the time the others were detained. He went into hiding in April after policemen visited his home reportedly to arrest him. He was a thorn to the Chinese since he was entrusted to keep the documents supporting their claims and justification of their rightful possession of the land.
Meanwhile the sister of the 39 year-old Kyab, Tsokyi, was beaten severely in detention and then released on September 22.
According to sources, the occupation of land in Thangkor is “not related to a specific Chinese policy, but was the work of local authorities who had bullied the Tibetan residents for their personal gain.”