Monday 9 May 2011

Two Kirti monks jailed amid continuing clampdown

(, May09, 2011)  Two monks of Kirti Monastery in Ngaba County of Sichuan Province have been jailed for three years on or around May 2, said the exile Tibetan government-run and other exile Tibetan reports May 7. Lobsang Dhargay, 31, was jailed for his involvement in the protest in Lhasa in March 2008 with other monks of Drepung Monastery where he had enrolled in 2003 and was still studying at the time. Kunchok Tsultrim, 33, was reported to be Kirti monastery’s storekeeper.

Lobsang Dhargay was initially held for five months at different detention centres in and around Lhasa before being sent back to Ngaba. In Ngaba he rejoined Kirti Monastery but remained under police surveillance. He was frequently required to report for questioning at police station and his residence was also raided many times. Eventually he was arrested on Apr 11.

Kunchok Tsultrim was arrested on Mar 16, although it was not clear why.

It was not clear whether the armed police blockade of the monastery had been lifted or not. However, the so-called patriotic education campaign to blaspheme the Dalai Lama and exalt China under communist party rule was reported to be continuing. The police and the paramilitary police were reported to be continuing to watch and scour the monastery, although in civilian dress and by staying put in cars and trucks parked around the monastery.

The police were reported to have forcibly occupied a residential compound built with funds arranged by a monk named Tenpa Yarphel for elderly monks and scripture teachers for use as their station.

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