By Kalsang Rinchen
Dharamsala, August 24 – Three Tibetans have been killed and 30 others severely wounded after Chinese security forces opened fire on unarmed Tibetan petitioners outside a government building in Palyul County, Sichuan Province, on August 18, sources said.
The incident occurred in Palyul County’s Sharchu Gyashoed (spelled as pronounced) village whose leader Tashi Sangpo had written to the local Chinese authorities to stop expansion of gold mining activities in the area. Village leader Tashi Sangpo had expressed his concerns about the fragile environment of his locality and objected to China’s gold mining activities in the area.
The local Tibetans have been concerned about the impacts of the mining on their lives and have been sternly demanding compensation from the government.
Around 100 Tibetans from the village had camped outside the government headquarters waiting for a response from the authorities to their plea. On the night of August 18, Chinese security forces tried to make the Tibetans unconscious by releasing a harmful gas. Tashi Sangpo and a few other Tibetans got into scuffle with the Chinese security forces who were seen moving unconscious Tibetans into a waiting truck. The security forces reportedly opened fire indiscriminately killing three Tibetans including two relatives of Tashi Sangpo, Soeso and Papho in the aftermath of the scuffle. Around 30 Tibetans have sustained bullet injuries and several others have been detained.
There is no information on the conditions of those injured or those detained. Reinforcements have been called from neighbouring counties as the situation remains tense.