Extrajudicial detention still a major issue despite RTL abolition

Diary written by a detainee and smuggled out of Masanjia RTL. The story of Masanjia RTL became a sensation in PRC and was one of the most popular news stories on the PRC’s top four news websites. China quickly censored the news and shuttered Lens Magazine which published the story.

Diary written by a detainee and smuggled out of Masanjia RTL. The story of Masanjia RTL became a sensation in PRC and was one of the most popular news stories on the PRC’s top four news websites. China quickly censored the news and shuttered Lens Magazine which published the story. [Photo: Seeingredinchina.com]

On Saturday 28 December 2013, the National People’s Congress Standing Committee voted to abolish Re-education Through Labor (RTL; Ch: laojiao).  This fulfills the promise the People’s Republic of China made in the 3rd Plenum Decision on 15 November 2013 to abolish the 56 year old Chinese system of gulags that had been used to imprison people in forced labor camps for up to four years.

When the National People’s Congress Standing Committee announced the abolition of RTL, it stated that it was because changes made to Chinese laws had made RTL redundant and it had fulfilled its historic mission.  This justification fails to recognize the fundamental problems inherent in RTL.  It ignores the substantial criticism of RTL for being an illegal system of arbitrary detention, forced labor, and torture.  Internationally, numerous States, NGOs, and international organizations, including the United Nations criticized RTL for violating international human rights law.  [Read more...]

Prominent political prisoner in critical condition on release after 17 years

A prominent Tibetan political prisoner, Jigme Gyatso, 52, was released recently after completing his 17 years’ prison term, according to exile Tibetan sources.

After his release, he is said to be in poor health struggling with multiple medical problems including weak eyesight, heart complications, kidney disorder and difficulty walking: all unmistakable signs that he had undergone years of torture, mistreatment and beatings during his imprisonment.

In April 2009, TCHRD issued an urgent statement calling for Jigme Gyatso’s release on medical grounds, after learning that Gyatso was seriously ill.[i] TCHRD’s concerns were based on the long history of Gyatso’s mistreatment and torture in detention centres and prisons in Tibet. Moreover, in February 2009, when relatives met Gyatso at Drapchi Prison Hospital, he appeared very frail and was suffering from a kidney problem. He could only walk with his back bended. [Read more...]

China arrests five Tibetans on uprising anniversary

Chinese authorities arrested five Tibetans in Sershul (Ch: Serxu) County in Kardze (Ch: Ganzi) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan Province, on the 54th anniversary of the Tibetan national uprising day on 10 March 2013.

According to information received by TCHRD, at around 11 am (local time) on 10 March 2013, three Tibetan monks from Ganden Samten Dhargyeling Monastery in Dzachuka area in Sershul County staged a protest march in the County town and got arrested along with two other lay Tibetan men who tried to persuade the monks from protesting for fear of arrest.
The source told TCHRD that the monks shouted slogans for “freedom, democracy, and the need for a Middle Way approach to solve the Tibet issue.” They carried a huge flag emblazoned with a portrait of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. [Read more...]

Family of Tibetan self-immolator barred from holding religious rituals

Family members of a Tibetan farmer who became the first Tibetan in 2013 to die of self-immolation protest against the Chinese government were barred from holding necessary rites and rituals for the deceased and forced to do the cremation in secret during night. [Read more...]

TAR Propaganda Chief Stresses Protecting Official Secrets in Tibet

 

The propaganda chief of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Committee of Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) has, in a speech at a seminar held on 11 July 2012 in the Tibetan capital Lhasa, emphasized the importance of ‘strengthening the concept of confidentiality, enhancing the sense of confidentiality, adherence to the discipline of confidentiality and  [Read more...]

Two Tibetan youngsters self-immolate in Jyekundo, one dies

Two Tibetan youngsters have set themselves on fire today in Trindu (Chinese: Chengdu) County in Jyekundo (Chinese: Yushu) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture (TAP) of Qinghai Province.

Ngawang Norpel, aged 22, and Tenzin Khedup, aged 24, self-immolated today at around 3:30 pm (Tibet Time) in Zatoe town, Trindu County, Jyekundo TAP, Qinghai Province. [Read more...]

Abbot ‘Disappeared’, Sister Dies Amid Widening Crackdown in Zatoe

Khenpo Gyewala, a highly-respected scholar and abbot of Gyegyel Zogchen Monastery, has ‘disappeared’ along with 13 others in Zatoe (Chinese: Zaduo) in YulShul (Chinese: Yushu) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Qinghai Province. [Read more...]

Indiscriminate Firing Kills 2 Tibetans, Maims 10 in Serta County

Two Tibetan men died after security forces opened fire on protesters on 24 January 2012 at Serta County (Ch: Seda) in Kardze Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan Province. [Read more...]

Lithang under siege days after the protest

According to the latest information received by the Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy (TCHRD), Chinese authorities in Lithang County have significantly beefed up security measures by bringing more forces amidst severe restriction imposed on the movement of the people in Lithang following days of protests.

According to sources, “hundreds of People’s Armed Police (PAP) -a paramilitary force- in full combat gears has arrived in Lithang County in the past couple of days following protest by Tibetans in the area. Severe restrictions are being put on the movement of the people in Lithang. People from villages and monasteries were told not to move out of their houses and warn of serious consequences if they come out in the street. All the shops, and restaurants remain closed with streets bearing complete deserted look except for the hundreds of security forces in full combat gears. The situation is very tense in Lithang at the moment.” [Read more...]

Arrestees from the demonstration in Lhasa Barkhor on Tibetan Uprising Day

TCHRD obtain pictures of the 15 monks who staged a peaceful protest in the Barkhor street in Lhasa on 10 March 2008. It has come to light that the 15 monks were joined by two laypersons during the protest. The details of the two could not be ascertained yet. Lhasa reels under tense situation. Drepung and Sera monasteries have been sealed and surrounded by the People’s Armed Police. Scores of monks are reported to be arrested from the two monasteries.

Lodoe, Age: 30, Onpo Monastery

Lodoe, Age: 30, Onpo Monastery

Lobsang Ngodup, Age: 29, Onpo Monastery

Lobsang Ngodup, Age: 29, Onpo Monastery

Gelek Pel, Age: 32, Lungkar Monastery

Gelek Pel, Age: 32, Lungkar Monastery

Lobsang Thukjey, Age: 19, Onpo Monastery

Lobsang Thukjey, Age: 19, Onpo Monastery

Lobsang, Age: 15, Onpo (Tibtranslit: dbon po) Monastery

Lobsang, Age: 15, Onpo (Tibtranslit: dbon po) Monastery

Lobsher, Age: 20, Onpo Monastery

Lobsher, Age: 20, Onpo Monastery

Phurdhen, Age: 22, Onpo Monastery

Phurdhen, Age: 22, Onpo Monastery

Soepa, Age: 30, Manggey (tibtranslit: mang dge) Monastery.

Soepa, Age: 30, Manggey (tibtranslit: mang dge) Monastery.

Tenpa Rigsang, Age: 26, Lungkar Monastery.

Tenpa Rigsang, Age: 26, Lungkar Monastery.

Pema Garwang, Age: 30, Darthang (tibtranslit: dar thang) Monastery.

Pema Garwang, Age: 30, Darthang (tibtranslit: dar thang) Monastery.

Thupwang, Age: 30, Darthang Monastery.

Thupwang, Age: 30, Darthang Monastery.

Tenpa Rigsang, Age: 26, Lungkar Monastery.

Tenpa Rigsang, Age: 26, Lungkar Monastery.

Tsultrim Palden, Age: 20, Onpo Monastery

Tsultrim Palden, Age: 20, Onpo Monastery

Tsegyam, Age: 22, Ka Shi (tibtranslit: ka bshi) Monastery.

Tsegyam, Age: 22, Ka Shi (tibtranslit: ka bshi) Monastery.

Thupdon, Age: 24, Onpo Monastery

Thupdon, Age: 24, Onpo Monastery

Samten, Age: 17, Lungkar Monastery.

Samten, Age: 17, Lungkar Monastery.