Thursday 19 December 2013

Tibetan monk dies of self immolation in Sangchu - Update

Phayul[Thursday, December 19, 2013 15:02]
Tsuiltrim Gyatso lie on the ground after his self immolation/Dec. 19, 2013/photo provided by source
Tsuiltrim Gyatso lie on the ground after his self immolation/Dec. 
19, 2013/photo provided by source
Undated photo of Tsuiltrim Gyatso who died after setting himself ablaze in Amchok town, Sangchu County, Dec. 19, 2013/file
Undated photo of Tsuiltrim Gyatso who died after setting himself ablaze in Amchok town, Sangchu County, Dec. 19, 2013

DHARAMSHALA, December 19 - A Tibetan monk of Amchok monastery died after he set himself on fire today in Amchok town, Sangchu County (around 2.30 PM local time). 

Tsuiltrim Gyatso, aged 43, is confirmed dead, and his body is at Amchok monastery where around 400 monks are conducting prayers as part of the post death rituals for the deceased, a Tibetan source told phayul. 

According to the Tibet Times, Tsuiltrim had left behind a handwritten note in Tibetan calling for unity amongst Tibetans, return of the exiled Tibetan leader the Dalai Lama and the release of the jailed Panchen Lama Gendun Choekyi Nyima. 

Survived by his aged mother Lhamo Kyi his father Tamdin Tashi died several years back.

Tsuiltrim becomes the 125th Tibetan to set himself on fire to protest the Chinese government since 2009.
The handwritten note left behind by Tsuiltrim Gyatso
The handwritten note left behind by Tsuiltrim Gyatso

Senior Tibetan monk dies in custody: Tibetan right group

Phayul[Thursday, December 19, 2013 14:23]
Ngawang Jamyang/file
Ngawang Jamyang/file
DHARAMSALA, December 19 - One of the three Tibetan monk from Driru County arrested on Nov. 23 from Lhasa has been tortured to death in police custody and his body handed over to his family on December 17, a Tibetan right group said today. 

According to the Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy, Ngawang Jampel, 45; died in police custody less than a month after his arrest along with fellow monks Kalsang Choklang and another monk on 23 Nov. this year in Lhasa where the three had gone for annual vacation. The whereabouts and conditions of the other two monks remain unknown, the right group said. 

“It was clear that Ngawang Jampel was beaten to death while in secret detention. He was a healthy, robust man when he left his monastery to visit Lhasa," the TCHRD quoted its source as saying.

Kalsang Choklang/file
Kalsang Choklang/file
Ngawang is the latest in the list of well-informed and educated Tibetans being targeted by Chinese authorities, the TCHRD believes. It also said that Ngawang has been on Chinese authorities' target since the nationwide protests in 2008 when Ngawang was arrested and jailed for two years for his alleged connection with the "exile separatist forces."

Family members cremated Ngawang's body at a crematorium near Sera Monastery in Lhasa. Prayers and other post death rituals are being conducted at the deceased’s home in Driru County.

The TCHRD further noted that the police have threatened the deceased’s family against speaking about Ngawang’s death to others, especially "exile separatist forces". 

Armed Chinese police and security personnel arrived last month at Tarmoe monastery where only a few monks and the monastery's temple caretaker were present. The police asked where the rest of the monks had gone and demanded keys to the locked rooms of the monks who were on vacation. The monks told the police they did not have the keys. Armed police immediately surrounded the monastery, and broke into the rooms ransacking them, and took away several personal belongings including laptops, cellphones, CDs, and other items. The police seized two laptops from Ngawang's room, said the source.

Ngawang Jampel born in 1968 in Totho Village in Driru County. In 1987, he became a monk at Tarmoe Monastery in his hometown. Two years later, he left for India to pursue further studies at Sera Je Monastery in south India. In 2007, he returned to his native town after 19 years of vigorous study of both Buddhism and modern sciences. 

After completing his two year prison term in 2010, he worked for sometime as a teacher of Buddhist debate at Choeling Monastery. He also started debate classes for both monk and lay communities at Tarmoe monastery which now remains closed due to the crackdown since 23 November 2013. The TCHRD said he was well respected by the local community for his numerous social welfare activities such as helping to peacefully mediate disputes and helping local Tibetans to shun harmful habits such as gambling.

Ngawang's death came as a huge shock to the residents of Driru, especially the monks of Tarmoe monastery. “He [Ngawang Jampel] was the most efficient administrator, teacher and a very conscientious person. Tarmoe would never be the same again without him,” TCHRD quoted its source. 

Chinese government considers Driru as one of the most restive regions brewing anti China sentiments and activities in the Tibet Autonomous Region, the source said. "They fear that instability in Diru could cause ripple effect in other areas in the TAR. Therefore, they have been engaged in forcing Tibetans in Driru to rigorous 'Thought Education Campaign' since September." 

French lawmakers propose Tibet Resolution in the National Assembly

Phayul[Wednesday, December 18, 2013 10:19]
Noël Mamère, Jean-Patrick Gille at the press conference. Paris, Tuesday 17 December 2013
Noël Mamère, Jean-Patrick Gille at the press conference. Paris, Tuesday 17 December 2013
PARIS, December 18: Deputies Jean-Patrick Gille from the Socialist Party, and Noël Mamère from the Greens Party on Tuesday presented a Tibet resolution in the French Parliament appealing to "restart dialogue between the Chinese authorities and the representatives of Tibetan government in exile".

The proposal was made in the backdrop of a visit to the French parliament on Tuesday by Wu Yingjie, deputy secretary of Tibet's regional committee of the Communist Party of China, on the invitation of France-China Friendship group. 

The resolution also called upon France and European Union to appoint a Special Coordinator for Tibetan Affairs. Deputies Gille and Mamère, who serve as co-presidents of the Tibet group at the French lower house also called upon the French government to take an active role in the Tibet impasse.

"It is now urgent that France lobby the Chinese government to end its repressive policy towards the Tibetan minority, particularly with regard to places of worship, and reaffirm her support for Tibetans, with regard to respect for human rights and freedom of expression that are the foundation of our foreign policy," said a joint press statement by the two who are part of the ruling coalition. 

Referring to ongoing spate of self-immolations in Tibet, Deputy Gille said that the self-immolations are "non-violent" and "sadly the most visible part of the the daily struggle" of the Tibetan people. 

Gille noted that the proposed resolution reaffirms the right of the Tibetan people to "freedom of conscience", in accordance with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Article 36 of the Constitution of PRC and "condemns the threat to language, culture, religion, heritage and the environment of Tibet" and the violations thereof by China.

Deputy Mamere said it also reiterates "support for the Middle Way Approach advocated by the Dalai Lama, whose purpose, as clearly stated in the Memorandum of 2010, is to establish" real autonomy for Tibet within the framework of PRC.