China expands new measures to directly control Tibetan monasteries

Tsultrim Kalsang, 25, one of the brightest students and an exceptional scholar at Nyatso Zilkar Monastery was sentenced to 10 years' imprisonment.

Tsultrim Kalsang, 25, one of the brightest students and an exceptional scholar at Nyatso Zilkar Monastery was sentenced to 10 years’ imprisonment.

Chinese authorities in Yulshul (Ch: Yushu) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Qinghai Province, in the Tibetan province of Kham has begun implementing new repressive measures introduced in late 2011 to directly control and manage Buddhist religious institutions in Tibet.

A source with contacts in Tibet told TCHRD that in recent months Chinese officials have been visiting Kyegudo and giving orders to Tibetan monasteries particularly those located in Trindu (Ch: Chenduo) County to replace all the monastic staff and management committee members with government and party appointees by 7 June 2014.

At Nyatso Zilkar Monastery located at Dzatoe (Ch: Zaduo) Township in Trindu County, a government appointed Monastery Management Committee (MMC) has already replaced the previous Democratic Management Committee (DMC) whose term of five years had not expired. The replacement took place earlier this month although TCHRD is unable to immediately confirm the exact date due to extreme restrictions on communication channels. The authorities accused the previous management committee of failing to maintain stability since numerous protests including self-immolation had occurred at the monastery in recent years notably in 2012 when Nyatso Zilkar monks were arbitrarily detained, beaten up, and sentenced including Tsultrim Kalsang, 25, who was sentenced to 10 years in prison. [Read more…]

Yushu mine protest crackdown exposes China’s ‘nature reserve’ sham

Armed police arrive to suppress protest in Gedrong area of Dzatoe County.

Armed police arrive to suppress protest in Gedrong area of Dzatoe County.

Last week, Chinese armed police beat and teargassed hundreds of Tibetans protesting illegal mining activities in Gedrong area in Dzatoe (Ch: Zaduo) County in Yushu Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Qinghai Province. Exile Tibetan sources reported the detention of eight known Tibetans and hospitalisation of many others who sustained injuries after they protested against illegal diamond mining on 13 August in Atoe, Zachen and Shiza villages in Dzatoe County.

There were reports of an attempted suicide by Sogpo Choedup and the disappearance of another Tibetan man, Khentsa Sodor following the 16 August crackdown. Chinese authorities warned of severe punishment including arrest and imprisonment if the Tibetans continued to protest. Armed police tore down a huge poster that carried Chinese president Xi Jinping’s recent message on environmental protection. By displaying the banner, Tibetan protesters had sought to remind local authorities about Xi’s recent pronouncements on environmental issues. [Read more…]

Four Tibetan monks released from Chinese labour camp

A banner at 8 February 2012 demonstration in Trindu calls for the return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to Tibet

A banner at 8 February 2012 demonstration in Trindu calls for the return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to Tibet

Four Tibetan monks have been released following their incarceration in a Re-education Through Labour (Ch: Laojiao) camp in Yushu Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture in Qinghai Province.

According to information received by TCHRD, four monks from Nyatso Zilkar Monastery: Sonam Gewa, Lobsang Samten, Lobsang Nyima and Tenzin Sherab were released last month from an RTL prison a few months before the completion of their sentence.

Tenzin Sherab was released on 15 July 2013. He was arrested on 1 October 2012 and later sentenced to one year for distributing a newspaper called Mar-jen (Raw Red) that apparently carried contents related to self-immolation protest. Sources say he suffered beatings and torture during detention and in RTL prison, he was forced to work for 16 hours with a brief lunch break making copper wires and gloves in the prison factory. [Read more…]

China sentences Tibetan monk to 10 yrs in prison

Tsultrim Kalsang, 26, was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

Tsultrim Kalsang, 25, was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

A Tibetan monk from the restive Nyatso Zilkar Monastery has been sentenced to 10 years in prison in Dzatoe (Ch: Zaduo) town, Tridu (Ch: Chenduo) County in Jyekundo (Chinese: Yushu), Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Qinghai Province.

According to information received by TCHRD, Tsultrim Kalsang, 25, received a 10-year sentence in prison on ‘intentional homicide’ charges, a charge used frequently by the Chinese authorities to crack down on self-immolation protests and to persecute critics of Chinese policy in Tibet.

On 12 July 2013, at around 8 am, an Intermediate People’s Court in Xining sentenced Tsultrim Kalsang to 10 years in prison.

Local sources say Tsultrim Kalsang’s charges are possibly related to the twin self-immolation protest carried out by two Tibetan youths in Dzatoe township on 30 June 2012. Both Ngawang Norphel, 22, and Tenzin Khedup, 24, died of their injuries. [Read more…]

Nyatso Zilkar monk in poor health after imprisonment

Sonam Yingyen

Sonam Yingyen

An imprisoned monk from the restive Nyatso Zilkar Monastery in Trindu (Ch: Chenduo) County, Jyekundo (Ch: Yushu) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture (Qinghai Province) was released on an unknown date last month before the expiration of his prison term due to medical emergency.

According to information received by TCHRD, Sonam Yingyen, 44, became seriously ill soon after he was sentenced to two-year imprisonment in October 2012 in Siling (Ch: Xining) city, capital of Qinghai Province. [Read more…]

Longlife prayers for Dalai Lama removed, ban on phonecalls with outsiders

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.
[Read more…]

Two Tibetans, monk and singer, sentenced to prison

A monk and a singer had been sentenced to five years and six years respectively by a Chinese court in Siling (Ch: Xining), capital of Qinghai Province.

On 23 February 2013, Lobsang Jinpa, 31, a monk from Nyatso Zilkar Monastery was sentenced to five years in prison, according to reliable information received by TCHRD. The monastery is located in Tridu (Ch: Chenduo) County in Kyegudo (Ch: Yushu) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Qinghai Province.  [Read more…]

Monk survives self-immolation but loses both legs

A Tibetan monk who self-immolated in protest against the Chinese government in February last year has survived but had both of his legs amputated, according to information received by TCHRD.

Sonam Rabyang, 42, a monk from Lab Monastery set his body on fire on 8 February 2012 at Triwang (Ch: Chen wen) town, capital of Tridu (Ch: Chenduo) County in Yulshul (Ch: Yushu) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture in Qinghai Province. [Read more…]

Tibetan singer sentenced to 2 yrs’ imprisonment

Around 20 March 2012, a Tibetan singer was sentenced to two years imprisonment for singing songs calling for Tibetan unity and freedom by the Nangchen(Chinese: Nangqian) County court inYulshul (Chinese: Yushu) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Qinghai Province.

Ugyen Tenzin, 25, was recently detained in February after releasing an album with songs of eulogy to the Dalai Lama, Karmapa and Lobsang Sangay, the Kalon Tripa of exile Tibetan administration. Ugyen was charged with singing political songs.

In 2008, Ugyen Tenzin was detained for a year for protesting against Chinese mining operations in Nangchen County, according to sources. He also encouraged the local Tibetans to protect the environment and stop mining in the area. [Read more…]