Nelson Mandela passed away on 5 December 2013. His state funeral on Sunday, 15 December is a time for the world to gather and remember Mandela’s life and legacy. Mandela will be forever remembered as the first black president of South Africa and a champion of non-violence who was instrumental not only in ending apartheid but also for uniting South Africa behind the rule of law, constitutionalism, and racial reconciliation after decades of minority rule by a racist regime. This legacy and the success of the “freedom struggle” against apartheid is an inspiration for Tibetans who live under a discriminatory regime that exists above the law and imposes its will through the heavy-handed use of force. [Read more...]
China has launched a crackdown on local Tibetans who had organised a religious ceremony to observe the birthday of Tibetan spiritual leader, His Holiness the Dalai Lama last month in Tawu (Ch: Dawu/Daofu) County in Kardze (Ch: Ganzi) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan Province, in the Tibetan province of Kham.
On 6 July 2013, China’s People’s Armed Police (PAP) beat and fired teargas and live ammunition on hundreds of Tibetans who had gathered near Machen Pomra Mountain in Tawu to offer the ritual of incense-burning to celebrate the birthday of the Dalai Lama. At least 14 known Tibetans were injured in the firing and others were detained.
Since then, local authorities in Tawu have intensified surveillance and monitoring of local Tibetans and announced strict punitive measures against local officials and cadres for failing to ‘maintain stability’. Local authorities have vowed to crack down on any signs of ‘separatist’ sentiments and activities by implementing five major ‘stability maintenance’ measures in Tawu County, according to a report published in the official Ganzi Daily newspaper. (Also click here for related report in Chinese language) [Read more...]
In the past weeks, there has been persistent speculation on ‘experimental’ moves by the Chinese authorities to overturn some of its decades-old vilification campaign against the Tibetan spiritual leader, His Holiness the Dalai Lama. A handful of Tibetan monasteries in the Tibetan provinces of Amdo and Kham, located respectively in present-day Qinghai and Sichuan provinces, were given verbal permission to display portraits of the Dalai Lama and worship him as a religious, and not as a political figure. According to these verbal orders, monks and nuns are no longer required to denounce the Dalai Lama, which is an essential component in political education classes in Tibet’s monastic institutions. Major international media outlets heralded this as a change in China’s Tibet policy.
Only a few days later on 28 June 2013, China’s State Administration for Religious Affairs (SARA), the highest official body that regulates all recognised religions in the People’s Republic of China, denied any reversal of its long-standing policy on the Dalai Lama. [Read more...]
Today marks the 18th year of Tibet’s XIth Panchen Lama, Gedhun Choekyi Nyima’s disappearance into Chinese custody. One of the most important spiritual leaders of Tibet, the then six-year-old Gedhun Choekyi Nyima and his family members were ‘disappeared’ by the Chinese authorities on 17 May 1995, just three days after His Holiness the Dalai Lama recognized him as the reincarnation of the previous Xth Panchen Lama.
TCHRD has translated the lyrics of a song, “Dear Panchen Lama”, sung by the imprisoned Tibetan singer Lolo about the previous Xth Panchen Lama and his ‘disappeared’ reincarnation. [Read more...]
‘Weakness of the Oppressor’ : Leaked document exposes psychological traumas faced by Chinese armed police in Tibet
TCHRD has received a Chinese language copy of a manual published by the Sichuan Provincial Political Department of the People’s Armed Police Force (PAPF, also called PAP), titled “Guide on Psychiatric Wellbeing While Maintaining Stability” that was circulated among different contingents, detachments and squadrons located at the province, prefecture, and county levels of Sichuan. The manual contains issues raised during a videoconference meeting held by Sichuan Province People’s Armed Police Force regarding the psychological and moral issues arising from stability maintenance work in Tibetan areas. Although the manual was drafted before Xi Jinping’s appointment earlier this year, there is no sign that he will change any of his predecessor’s policies regarding Tibet. [Read more...]
Chinese officials scraped off a longlife prayer for Dalai Lama carved on a rockface near the besieged Nyatso Zilkar Monastery in Tridu (Ch: Chenduo) County in Kyegudo (Ch: Yushu) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Qinghai Province.
According to information received by TCHRD, the incident happened soon after the 54th anniversary of the 1959 Tibetan national uprising on 10 March when monks carved on the nearby rockface a prayer that Tibetan Buddhists recite for the long life of their spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama.
Ugyen Lhundup, 57, was a farmer at Thangka Village in Kardze (Ch: Ganzi) Township in Kardze Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan Province. In 1999, he came to India and lived for some time to study Buddhism. In 2001, after attending the Kalachakra teachings at Bodh Gaya in the north Indian state of Bihar, he returned to Tibet taking along some CDs and books containing religious teachings, which he shared with others on requests from friends and relatives. He also made free copies of the CDs and distributed them among his social circle. It was then that he became a prime target for supervision and surveillance. On 21 October 2012, to escape imminent arrest, he left his house and farm in the care of his neighbor, and secretly left Tibet and reached India on 15 December 2012. Ugyen Lhundup shares his ordeal:
“In 2002, the head of County Public Security Bureau officer, Loga, summoned me at his office. At the PSB office, the officer confiscated my passport and threatened me with five to six months’ detention, if I did not stop questioning the confiscation of my passport. I was let go but without my passport. [Read more...]
According to confirmed information received by TCHRD, on 2 February, at around 6 am, a monk named Lobsang Namgyal, 37, from Kirti Monastery in Ngaba (Ch: Aba) County committed self-immolation near the Public Security Bureau office in Dzoege (Ch: Ru’ergai) County in Ngaba Prefecture, Sichuan Province, in the Tibetan province of Amdo.
The monk, who died on the spot, was seen with running towards the police station, his body in flames, shouting slogans such as ‘May the Dalai Lama live for tens of thousands of years,’ sources told TCHRD.
Later, the Chinese police found a bag on the site of self-immolation, in which they found the monk’s identity card and a letter, which confirmed the identity of the monk as Lobsang Namgyal hailing from Kirti Monastery. [Read more...]