10/17/2011, 00.00
TIBET – CHINA
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Sichuan: another monk sets himself on fire, police beat him and take him away

A young former monk from Kirti Monastery self-immolates for a free Tibet. He is the eighth Tibetan to choose this extreme form of protest in a few months. Tibetans in exile organise day of fast and prayer in solidarity with their suffering countrymen.
Dharamsala (AsiaNews/Agencies) – Norbu Dramdul, a 19-year-old Tibetan, set himself on fire shouting 'Freedom for Tibet' and 'Let the Dalai Lama return to Tibet', in Ngaba (Aba, in Chinese), an area in China's south-western Sichuan province. He is the eighth person to choose self-immolation this year to protest against Chinese rule and human rights violations.

After Chinese police extinguished the fire, they beat him up, bundled him in a police car and sped away, eyewitnesses said. His condition remains unknown.

Quickly, police was deployed in great numbers in the area.

Dramdul is a former monk from Ngaba's Kirti monastery. Beginning early this year, the lamasery has been under siege by Chinese security forces. Hundreds of its monks have been arrested and taken away to secret destinations.

Most of the other seven self-immolations were by monks from Kirti monastery.

The protest comes ahead of the day of fasting and prayer announced by the Tibetan government-in-exile for Wednesday in solidarity with Tibetans under China’s yoke.

On several occasions, Beijing has accused the Dalai lama, Tibet’s spiritual leader, of violating Buddhist teachings for not condemning these violent acts of self-harm.

Experts note however that the Dalai Lama has always advised against such deeds, whilst refraining from criticising those who sacrifice themselves for a just cause since any form of protest in Tibet is crushed and protesters are arrested and sentenced to various years in prison.
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