Tibetans appeal for release of anti-corruption activist
Phayul[Wednesday, January 23, 2019 17:53]
By Tenzin Dharpo

Anya Sengra. Photo- TCHRD
Anya Sengra. Photo- TCHRD
DHARAMSHALA, Jan. 23: Local Tibetans in Kyangche Township, Gade County, Golok in so called Qinghai Province, in the Tibetan region of Amdo has appealed for the release of anti- corruption activist Anya Sengdra who was detained since the last five months by Chinese authorities.

According to a Tibet Times report on January 21, Tibetans from the detained activist’s native have forwarded an appeal letter along with thumb impressions as signatories to vouch support for him and rejected Chinese government accusation that he was a negative element in the community.

On 11 December, the Gade County Public Security Bureau (PSB) suspected Mr Sengdra of committing other crimes in addition to ‘provoking trouble’ for which they ostensibly had to undertake further investigation and hence the detention period was extended from 12 November, 2018 to 12 January the following year, Dharamshala based rights group Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy (TCHRD) earlier said.

Anya Sengdra, 47, detained on 4 September last year from the highway intersection in Golok by PSB officers and taken to the PSB detention centre in Drotsang County, Tsoshar Prefecture. His health according to his Chinese lawyer is extremely poor and has lost a lot weight.

The Tibetan anti-corruption activist has been a regular figure since 2014, raising voice and demanding accountability from corrupt local officials over the relocation and housing of Tibetan nomads in his locality.

TCHRD said it strongly condemns the arbitrary detention of Mr Sengdra on the politicized charge of ‘provoking trouble’ and calls for his immediate and unconditional release.

“Provoking trouble is a vaguely worded offence under Article 293 of Chinese Criminal Law that has been increasingly used in recent years particularly since Xi Jinping’s presidency to persecute and launch reprisals against human rights defenders and other activists critical of government policies and practices,” the rights group earlier stated.

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