News and Views on Tibet

Three Tibetan monks stage protest in Bathang, One arrested, two on the run

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DHARAMSHALA, March 12: Three Tibetan monks of the Yaso monastery in Bathang region of eastern Tibet staged a peaceful protest against China’s rule on March 8, raising slogans for the Dalai Lama’s long life and Tibet’s independence.

Chinese security personnel arrested one of the monks, while the two others managed to escape and are currently on the run.

According to Bawa Kalsang Gyaltsen, a member of the Dharamshala based Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile, the three monks paraded the ‘banned in Tibet’ Tibetan national flag as they carried out their protest in Bathang.

“The monks shouted slogans for the long life of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Tibet’s independence, and language rights,” Gyaltsen said citing sources in the region.

“While the monks were carrying out their protest, several Chinese security personnel arrived at the scene and arrested one of the monks. The two others managed to escape arrest and are currently on the run.”

The arrested monk has been identified as Tashi Dorjee, while the names of the two other monks have not been revealed.

The protest on March 8 followed rising tensions in the region after Chinese authorities barred local Tibetans from carrying out a consecration (rabney) ceremony of a statue of the Dalai Lama commissioned by a local monastery, the same source said.

Prevailing tensions over a Chinese mining site near the Yaso Monastery, in addition to the protests, has ensured that the region remains under strict surveillance and heavy lockdown.

Chinese leaders of Tibetan areas, last week renewed their pledge to fight against the “Dalai clique resolutely” and crackdown on “all secessionist forces and sabotage activities.”

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