The Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy (TCHRD) received confirmed information from multiple sources, that at least three Tibetan protestors were shot dead this afternoon during a peaceful demonstration in Kardze County, Sichuan Province in eastern Tibet after Chinese security forces started an indiscriminate firing on the peaceful Tibetan protestors.
The incident took place on 18 March 2008, today between 2:30 – 3:00 PM (Beijing Standard Time) when around 300 Tibetans from all walks of life staged a peaceful protest demonstration in the main market square of Kardze County, Sichuan Province by raising slogans calling for “independence for Tibet” and “Long Live the Dalai Lama”.
Soon after, more and more Tibetans in the market joined the protest demonstration shouting the pro-independence slogans. According to eyewitnesses account from the scene of demonstration, the Chinese paramilitary troops started firing live ammunition indiscriminately into the demonstrators from a rooftop of one building. Protestors started dispersing in all directions for cover. After a short while, three dead bodies were found lying on the road. According to sources, two of them were identified as Gonpo Nadul, Nyiga and the name of the third victim is still unidentified at the moment.
Sources say that 15 Tibetan peaceful protestors were also injured during the indiscriminate firing by the Chinese security forces. Out of 15 injured Tibetans, identities of the five, two females and three males were known. They are Pema Dechen, Chemi Gonpo, Lobsang, Tseten Phuntsok and Shao Mimi. The present conditions of those injured could not be ascertained, as visitors were not allowed inside Kardze People’s Hospital, where the injured were admitted.
No further information on the exact number of dead, injured or arrest could be ascertained at the moment. TCHRD will issue further updates as the situation progresses.
TCHRD condemns in strongest terms the Chinese security forces’ brutal use of force on the peaceful Tibetan demonstrators. The Centre will update on the situation as and when more information surfaces from the area.