A young Tibetan monk was shot by Chinese police after he set himself on fire Feb. 27, the third day of the Tibetan New Year, at a market in Sichuan province’s Aba (Ngaba in Tibetan) prefecture, Voice of Tibet radio service reported, citing eye-witness accounts. The monk from Kirti Trunkhor monastery was apparently named Tabey and aged between 25 and 30. He doused himself with gasoline and set himself ablaze after holding aloft a picture of the Dalai Lama. He collapsed after being shot by police, and was taken away. It is not known if he is alive or dead.
VOT radio linked the incident to the Chinese government’s restrictions on holding the annual great prayer festival, Monlam Chenmo. Around a thousand monks had reportedly gathered at Kirti monastery earlier in the day demanding that they be allowed to hold the great prayer festival. (Phayul, WP, Feb. 27)
More than 100 Tibetan monks in Qinghai province marked the Tibetan New Year, Losar, with a peaceful march protesting Chinese repression of their culture Feb. 25. Tibetans have largely boycotted traditional Losar festivities this year in memory of those killed and imprisoned in protests against Chinese rule throughout the ethnic Tibetan regions last year. (Radio Free Asia, Feb. 26)
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