Two Tibetans arrested over March 2008 protests
Dharamsala (AsiaNews) – One year on from the March 2008 protests and Chinese police are still hunting for all those who took part in the Tibetan protests. In May they arrested two brothers Tenpa and Jamdo from Rapa village, Kardze county (in Chinese: Ganzi).
The Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy (TCHRD) reports that Tenpa and Jamdo peacefully protested with an estimated 300 Tibetans in the central square of Kardze on March 18th 2008. The police fired on the crowd killing at least 3 people. The two brothers fled, without ever being able to return home, because they were being searched for. For over a year they hid in nearby mountains, constantly changing their hide-out, until their arrest earlier this month in Jiekundo (Qinghai). It is not known where they have been taken.
In the aftermath of the 2008 protests thousands of Tibetans have been forced to flee, because they are being hunted by the Chinese, many attempting to get to India.
Only a few days ago Maday Gonpo and the monk Tsering Jigme (see photo), who also took part in the Kardze protest and have been on the run since, arrived in India. Authorities have put a ransom of between 10 and 20 thousand Yuan for their capture, and even announced the bounty on television. Gonpo recalls that he was invoking the Dalai Lama, when the army arrived and opened fire on them. Since then they have been on the run.
According to the Kardze prosecutors office 73 Tibetans have been arrested for the March 2008 protests. The TCHRD says the number is far higher.
On May 21st Kanlho court sentenced Buddhist monk Tsultrim Gyatso from Labrang monastery to life in prison, on the charge of “threatening public security” for having taken part in a protest on March 15th 2008 in Sangchu county. At least 235 Tibetans have been sentenced of their part in the protests; among them 5 have been sentenced to death 11 to life in prison.