Tibet: villagers clash with police over mining project

At least five protesters, including two women, were injured May 15 as thousands of Tibetan villagers in Markham County, Chamdo Prefecture, Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR), marched in protest of planned mining operations on a mountain they consider sacred. The People’s Armed Police Force used tear gas and charged the protesters, who attempted to block mining company personnel from entering the region. Authorities have since initiated talks on the project with local village leaders.

Markham (Chinese: Mangkang) was the site of protests last year after authorities granted mineral rights to Zhongkai Co. on Ser Ngul Lo mountain, where Tibetans have traditionally performed prayers and rituals. Last year’s protests were similarly halted after authorities agreed to talks on the mine’s environmental impacts. (Tibetan Review, May 17; Phayul, May 15)

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