12/23/2014, 00.00
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Young Tibetan sets woman herself on fire in protest against Chinese repression

The tragic episode took place in Sichuan province. Since 2009, 135 Tibetans have taken their lives demanding an end to Chinese dictatorship and the return of the Dalai Lama to Tibet.

Dharamsala (AsiaNews/Agencies) - A 20 year old woman died after setting herself ablaze in "protest against the repressive policy" of China that oppresses religion and Tibetan culture.

Tsepe Kyi (see photo), set herself on fire yesterday afternoon at Meruma, Ngaba County (Aba in Chinese), in the region of Sichuan. Local sources describe Tsepe as a girl of "good character and personal integrity." She lived as a nomad with her parents and six brothers and sisters. She had no formal education.

Chinese police immediately took her body away and questioned her relatives.

Since 2009, at least 135 Tibetan men and women, many of them very young, have chosen to make gestures of self-immolation in protest against Chinese dictatorship that is leading to the Tibetan genocide.

Tsepe's self-immolation is the second in December. Last December 16, 33-year-old Sanghye Khar set himself on fire in front of a police station in Amchok in Sangchu County (Xiahe), in the Chinese province of Gansu.

Chinese authorities have increased control over Tibetan areas in the attempt to prevent self-immolations and have arrested Tibetans who promote this kind of protest.

Those who sacrifice themselves are asking for the free return of the Dalai Lama to Tibet.

The Dalai Lama, the spiritual leader of Tibetan Buddhism, is branded by China as a secessionist and as "a wolf in sheep's clothing." He has repeatedly appealed to young people to preserve their lives, using them to protest in a more constructive and less desperate manner.



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