Tibetan sets himself on fire
Update: since this article was written, it has been confirmed that Kunchok Tseten died following his protest. He was cremated by the authorities and his ashes given to his family. A 30-year-old man called Kunchok Tseten has become the latest Tibetan to set himself on fire in protest against China’s occupation. It is not currently known whether he is alive or dead. The protest took place yesterday in Meruma Township, Ngaba County.
Chinese government atrocities
Kunchok Tseten is reported to have stated his intention to self-immolate earlier this year, saying “I cannot bear the atrocities of the Chinese government any longer.” Having set himself on fire, he called for the return of the Dalai Lama and reunification of Tibet. Local Tibetans tried unsuccessfully to prevent Kunchok Tseten from being taken by security forces.
Arrests, communication shutdown
Police have arrested a number of Tibetans in the area, including his wife. The authorities have imposed a communications shutdown and seized any cell phones they saw being used after the protest.
UK Prime Minister visit
The protest took place on the final full day of the state visit of the UK Prime Minister to China. There is nothing at present to indicate that the two events were related but Mr Cameron’s policy of making no reference to concerns about Tibet in public has been sharply criticised during his visit. More than 120 Tibetans have now set themselves on fire as an act of protest. Read the full list.
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