China detains 81 Tibetans in “strike hard” campaign

Chinese state media report that 81 people in Tibet have been detained for suspected criminal activity amid a security sweep. That number includes two who are being held for having “reactionary music” on their mobile phones. A report by the state-run Tibetan Daily said the public security bureau of Lhasa launched a “strike hard” campaign against crime on Jan. 18, with raids on numerous residential areas, hotels, guesthouses, Internet cafes and bars. Authorities have reportedly arrested 51 people for unspecified activities and charged another 30 with robbery, prostitution, theft and reactionary music found in their mobile phones.

“After the violent incident in March, some people with ulterior motives under the scheming and encouragement of the Dalai splitist clique intentionally spread rumours and incited ethic feelings, threatening national and personal security,” China News Service said. Rights groups say hundreds of Tibetans still remain behind bars in the wake of the March protests, with many having “disappeared.” (Press Association, Jan. 28)

See our last post on Tibet.