Senior Tibetan monks blamed and threatened with further investigation
A 22-year old Tibetan monk was arrested on 26 November 2014 at around 3:50pm local time whilst carrying out a solo protest. Sonam Yarphel marched along a street in the capital of Sershul County in Kardze, Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture. He was heard shouting slogans of “Long Live the Dalai Lama", "Return the Dalai Lama to Tibet", and "Tibetans Have No Freedom”. He also held a banner with “Long Live the Dalai Lama" written in Tibetan and a photograph of the Dalai Lama. His protest lasted for approximately 10 to 15 minutes before local Chinese police arrested Yarphel and took him to the county detention centre. A number of Tibetan bystanders had gathered and some of them tried to help the protester as he was being apprehended.
Monastery under investigation
After Yarphel’s arrest, Chinese police went to his monastery to question other monks. Senior monks from Mangge Monastery have been accused of being behind Yarphel's protest and further investigation has been threatened. The presence of police and security officers has been significantly increased on the streets of Sershul County and all communication lines have been cut in the area.
There have been various solo protests in China-occupied Tibet, including two in Kardze last month. Passang Wangchuk and Doree, who were both arrested, called for freedom and the return of the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama.
All types of free speech are criminalised in Tibet, even simply singing songs expressing national pride. Read more and sign our petition to free Tibet’s Jailed Musicians.