06/16/2012, 00.00
TIBET - CHINA

Tibetan nomad self-immolates in front of police station

Tamding Thar died shortly after from severe burns. In Chentsa, in Qinghai province, hundreds of people took to the streets to protest against Chinese oppression.

Lhasa (AsiaNews)- Self-immolations in protest against Chinese government oppression continue to plague Tibet. Yesterday, a Tibetan nomad set himself on fire in front of the police barracks in Chentsa (Malho) in Qinghai Province. Dozens of police surrounded Tamding Thar, 50, to put out the flames with a fire extinguisher and led man in critical condition inside the barracks, where he died a few hours later because of severe burns.

According to sources, the Tibetan Center for Human Rights and Democracy (TCHRD), hundreds of people gathered outside the police station until the authorities returned the body. The protests against the deaths  spread to the rest of the county. To avoid disturbances, the authorities have deployed dozens of policemen on the streets and around government buildings.

Born in the village near the town of Lowa Chentsathang, the man and his family were forced to move to Chentsa because of the policies of "relocation of nomads" pursued by the government in Beijing.

In recent months dozens of young Tibetan monks and lay people, have chosen self-immolation as an extreme act of protest against Chinese rule. Since early 2012, nearly 40 Tibetans have self-immolated to criticize the dictatorship in Beijing and demand the return of the Dalai Lama in Tibet. Furthering targeting  the Tibetan community, the 24th of May, the Chinese authorities in Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) have issued a notification, prohibiting local Communist Party members, leaders, administrative officials and even students from participating in religious activities, including the festival of Saga Dawa (Vesak, which commemorates the birth, enlightenment and the abandonment of the earthly life of the Buddha). (N.C.)

 

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