In early January 2023, Tseta (46) and Dhonko (26) were detained by Gyalthang County security personnel from the ‘Dolma Home’ guesthouse without any apparent justification. The two construction workers’ families were also called into the police station, whereupon they were interrogated about their incomes and their mobile phones were searched.
The arrest of the two Tibetans seems to be arbitrary, and no official reasoning has been given to their families. However, sources speculate that the two may have been swept up in a recent police crackdown on alleged illegal timber farming. Tibetans local to the area report that others have also been detained on false charges of “cutting and selling illegal timber” in recent months.
Sources contacted by Tibet Watch report that some lower-level forest guards have been involved in farming and trading illegal timber in Yunnan Province. An investigation into these activities conducted by the Chinese National Forestry and Grassland Administration has seen many innocent Tibetans arrested and interrogated, with false charges being levied against them.
Tseta (ཚེ་བཀྲ།) and his son-in-law Dhonko (དོན་ཁོ།) both hail from Tsether Village (ཚེ་ཐར་སྡེ་བ།) in Gyalthang County (རྒྱལ་ཐང་རྫོང་།). They are currently being held incommunicado and their location and wellbeing is unknown.
Information supplied by Tibet Watch