Fate of Tibetan political prisoner remains unknown after four years

Namkha has remained unseen and unheard of since his arrest in 2018

Namkha, a Tibetan man in his mid-60s from the village of Arong in Kyimdang County, was arrested by the Chinese authorities in Nyingtri in 2018. 

His arrest was carried out under the pretence that Namkha “leaked state secrets”. Accordingly, he was swiftly sentenced to imprisonment for five years and three months. 

During this time, no information in regards to his life, health, and whereabouts since his arrest and subsequent disappearance has been given. 

This arrest adds to a long list of arbitrary detentions of Tibetans. An external Tibetan source told Tibet Watch, Free Tibet’s research partner, that Namkha’s case is all too familiar – another “neglected political prisoner.” 

As evidenced by other reports of Tibetan detainees, Tibetans held in detention or prison are often subjected to torture, despite China’s ratification of the United Nations Convention Against Torture in 1988.

According to information gathered by Tibet Watch, residents in Namkha’s home village of Kyimdang County “want to help him, but it is very difficult”. Given the mass surveillance network that operates in Tibet, it is almost impossible to “ascertain whether [Namkha] is even alive or not”. As a result, what happens on his release date the following year will be eagerly anticipated by the community.


Information supplied by Tibet Watch

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