07/10/2009, 00.00
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Another arrested Tibetan monk disappears without trace

Chinese authorities continue their systematic persecution of Labrang Monastery monks. After placing a hood over his head police arrest monk like some dangerous criminal. Since then he has not been heard of.

Dharamsala (AsiaNews) – Tsayul Kelsang Gyatso, a monk at Labrang Monastery in Sangchu County (Xiahe Xian in Chinese), was arbitrarily arrested last May and has been held for the past two months, this according to the Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy (TCHRD).

The monk was taken away, head in a hood, during a police raid on 22 May, involving a lot of agents. Nothing is known about his whereabouts or health conditions ever since.

No charges have been formally laid but it is thought that he took part in protests in Labrang in 2008. Before his arrest he had been under police surveillance.

The TCHRD said that Chinese police is for all intents and purposes persecuting the monks at Labrang Monastery. In fact on14 May two other monks were taken away by police and have not been heard of ever since.

Tibetans accuse Chinese authorities of persecuting them, for their religion as well, with monks singled out. Ordinary believers are not left out though; all of them run a risk of arrest if they are caught with photos or writings by their spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama. (NC)

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