By Tenzin Dharpo
DHARAMSHALA, July 18: A young Tibetan woman has reportedly been detained after she staged a lone protest in the restive Ngaba Town, Ngaba County in Eastern Tibet in an apparent protest against the repressive Chinese policies in Tibet. The woman held above her head a photo of the exiled Tibetan leader the Dalai Lama as she protested.
The woman whose identity remains unknown was described to be wearing a white dress during the protest and believed to be in her 20’s, according to Radio Free Asia
. She was detained as she walked through the infamous ‘Martyr’s lane’ (tib. Pawoe Sanglam) in Ngaba Town around 4 pm local time on July 14 by a Chinese sentry stationed nearby.
A resident Tibetan who remains nameless in fear of Chinese persecution said that the unidentified woman came from Ngaba County’s Churle Karma village. The same source mentioned, “It is inconvenient for me to speak about this on the phone. It is better in particular not to say anything about issues related to Tibetan politics.”
The condition and the whereabouts of the Tibetan woman are unknown as of now.
Earlier this year on May 2, a monk named Thubten was detained after he staged a protest at the same street. Solo protests are seen by experts as an increasingly viable means to protest against Chinese rule and the policies implemented inside Tibet. Due to the criminalization of self-immolations by Chinese law and the harsh punishments including imprisonment meted out to family members by Chinese authorities, more and more incidences of solo protests are emerging from inside Tibet. Observers also believe that the Chinese government’s restriction on the assembly of Tibetans, solo protests emerge adding spontaneity to their actions without the need for premeditated planning among protestors.
In the last few months, over 11 Tibetans have staged solo protest against the Chinese rule in Tibet and called for ‘Dalai Lama’s return to Tibet’ and ‘Freedom in Tibet’.
Ngaba is a hotbed for protests against the Chinese regime and self immolation protests since 2009. So far 143 Tibetans have resorted to self immolation as a form of protest against the Chinese government.