A report of the recent string of violence and imprisonment against the Tibetan population in China.
According to Radio Free Asia, a Tibetan monk recently died while in Chinese police custody, following severe beatings and torture, and having been denied medical care. The 32-year-old monk, named Karwang, was accused by Chinese authorities of having put up Tibetan independence posters in May on the walls of the Chinese government building located in Nyagrong.
Yeshe Sangpo, himself a native of Nyagrong living in India, reports that authorities attempted to coerce Karwang into a confession for the act. When the monk refused to implicate himself, Sangpo says, he was “severely tortured and beaten.” He died a few days later as a result of his injuries.
Chinese authorities returned Karwang’s body to his family, along with 28,000 yuan ($4,425 USD), apparently compensation for his death. The posters appeared on the government building following mass protests in the preceding months, and authorities continue searching for participants; four Tibetans were detained in late March for having allegedly been involved.
In related news
Chinese detentions of protesters have been on the rise, as has been reported recently by Tibet Post International. In February of this year, Tamchoe Sangpo of Bongthak Monastery self-immolated to protest Chinese occupation of Tibet. The monk’s actions were then followed by the detention of nine others from the same monastery, arrested and charged with having “contacts outside of Tibet.”
One of these monks received a sentence of one year in prison, and another was sentenced to two to six months; another monk’s whereabouts are entirely unknown. Following the self-immolation, all monks under the age of 18 at the monastery were returned home to their families. Older monks were detained at the monastery for three months.
Foreigners banned from Tibet
All of this coincides with the news that China has now banned all foreign visitors from entering Tibet. The ban, imposed by the Chinese National Tourist Office, will last at least through June, with the possibility of continuing indefinitely. Foreigners had previously been forbidden to enter Tibet from late February to early April. China has been known to impose such bans in the past, including one last year around this time. Bans on tourism typically occur during religious holidays and protests.