49-year-old father of four reported to have died
49-year-old Namlha Tsering set himself alight opposite the Sangchu county cinema hall on 17 February. Also known as Hoba, he leaves a wife and four sons, the oldest of whom is a monk. Photographs of his protest show him sitting cross-legged in flames in the carriageway of the main road.
Namlha Tsering's protest is the seventh confirmed in 2013 (six inside Tibet, one in Nepal), and follows that of Dhukpa Kyar on February 13. Both took place in the face of a crackdown by China specifically intended intended to curb this form of protest. Recent weeks have seen a wave of arbitrary detentions and severe sentences for Tibetans accused of involvement in self-immolation protests.
In January a monk called Lobsang Kunchok was given a suspended death sentence for “intentional homicide” after allegedly inciting eight such protests, and eight other individuals have been given lengthy sentences in jail so far this year.
These measures have not deterred protests so far and other Tibetans have been courageous enough to risk the wrath of the authorities by sharing information about the protests.
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