First self-immolations of 2012

6th January 2012

Protests will continue until the West acts

Two people set themselves on fire in Ngaba Town today – the 13th and 14th acts of self-immolation against Chinese oppression since March of last year. One person is believed to have died. An eye-witness account reports that a man, thought to be a lay person, set himself on fire near Kirti Monastery in Ngaba Town at around 2.50pm (local time). His well-being and whereabouts are unknown. A second person, identified as former Kirti Monastery monk Pawo Tsultrim, who set himself on fire nearby at the same time, is reported to have died at the scene.

Rejection of Chinese occupation

Responding to the news, Free Tibet Director Stephanie Brigden said: “These latest self-immolations confirm that what we are currently witnessing in Tibet is a sustained and profound rejection of the Chinese occupation. “It is a damning indictment of the international community that 14 people, in different parts of Tibet, have now chosen to set themselves on fire and the international community has failed to respond. “We can only expect that such acts of protest will continue for as long as world leaders turn a blind eye to the desperate situation in Tibet. Read the full Free Tibet press release.

Return of the Dalai Lama

Secondary sources claim that, like many others who have self-immolated over the last 10 months, the male lay person was heard calling for the return of the Dalai Lama before Chinese forces extinguished the flames and removed him. More than 40 Tibetans have now set themselves on fire in protest at the repressive Chinese occupation of their country. See the full list.