Five Major Tibetan NGOs Condemn China’s Attack on Kirti Monastery

Chinese Troops Turn Monastery into Virtual Prison; Cut off Critical Food Supplies to Monks

Since the self-immolation of a 20-year old monk Phuntsok at Kirti Monastery on March 16, 2011 the situation in Ngaba, eastern Tibet (Ch: Aba, Qinghai Province) has been extremely tense. The Chinese authorities have now imposed a severe lockdown on the monastery, armed guards are patrolling the entrance, and the back of the monastery has been enclosed within cement walls built to imprison the monks inside. Food supplies have been cut off, prompting widespread fears that the monastery will face a food crisis in the coming days. There are approximately 2,500 monks trapped inside the monastery.

In recent weeks, the Chinese government has violently restricted religious activities at Kirti Monastery and has launched a vigorous ‘Patriotic Re-Education Campaign’. The Monastery – a sanctuary for the practice of Buddhism and teachings of peace – has been effectively converted into an enormous prison. Dozens of monks have been arrested and taken from the monastery and their whereabouts remain unknown.

“As a former political prisoner, I have personally experienced the kind of torture inflicted on Tibetans in Chinese prison. The Kirti monks are innocent and are under attack for simply expressing their internationally recognized right to freedom of religion,” said Lukar Jam, Vice President of GuChuSum (former Political Prisoner’s Movement of Tibet). “We are gravely concerned about the situation in Ngaba and call for the immediate release of all those arbitrarily detained in recent weeks.”

According to reliable sources in Ngaba, residents learned on the evening of April 11th 2011 that Chinese authorities were planning to forcibly remove all monks between the ages of 18 and 40 from the monastery. The monks were to be transferred to local prisons where they would be subjected to China’s repressive political “reeducation”.

Local Tibetans immediately gathered at the monastery to block the entrance. The armed police and soldiers tried to break through the crowd by beating the Tibetans and setting police dogs on them. In spite of the violent attacks, the Tibetans stood their ground and the troops failed to enter the monastery’s inner gates.

“The United Nations and world governments must intervene in the name of human rights and pressure the Chinese government to put an end to its violent attacks and intimidation tactics in Ngaba,” said Tsewang Rigzin, President of Tibetan Youth Congress on behalf of the 5 Tibetan NGOs. “We urge the global community to express outrage and to take immediate action to protect the lives of innocent Tibetans.”

The barbaric acts being carried out by Chinese authorities in Ngaba are reminiscent of the destruction and severe repression inflicted on Tibetans by Chinese troops after the invasion of Tibet in 1949 and during the Cultural Revolution.

Since 1959, the Chinese government has continued to destroy Tibetan monasteries. brutalizing and torturing Tibetan monks and nuns. 50 years of Chinese rule, however, has not destroyed the Tibetan people’s spirit but instead has served to further fuel the resistance movement throughout Tibet.

On March 16th, 2008, during the peaceful uprising in Ngaba, protestors were brutally suppressed by Chinese troops and at least 10 Tibetans were killed. It was on the 3rd anniversary of this incident that Phuntsok self-immolated himself in protest against Chinese rule in Tibet.

In recent weeks, two other Tibetans – 59-year old Bulug and a 37-year old monk named Jamyang, died as a result of injuries sustained in police detention following their involvement in peaceful protests in 2008.

Tibetan Youth Congress
Tibetan Women’s Association
National Democratic Party of Tibet
GuChuSum movement of Tibet
Students for a Free Tibet-India

* This is an English translation of the original Tibetan version. In case of any discrepancy, the binding version is the Tibetan original.

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About INDIA: Stand Up for Tibet-Petition

Please sign this petition to strongly urge Shri S. M. Krishna, The Minister of External Affairs to make a strong and clear statement acknowledging the crackdown in Tibet, and to highlight the human rights violations being carried out in Tibet today. We will deliver this petition on October 2nd, 2012 - Gandhi Jayanti - a day that symbolizes our nation’s ability to reject colonial rule, to recognize freedom as our birthright, and to regain our independence. National wide Candle Light Vigil wil be organised by our Indian Members and supporters in all the Indian major cities that day. Tibet Needs You Now! Students for a Free Tibet, India (SFT India) is the India National Network of Students for a Free Tibet International, which has over 650 chapters in more than 35 countries. We are a Non-Profit Organization funded entirely by our members and supporters. Founded in the year 2000 from a very humble beginning as a loose network of few young activists and students based in Dharamshala campaigning for Tibet’s Independence, SFT India has grown as nation-wide network of youth, campaigning for the Fundamental Rights of the Tibetan people, and we are still growing. It is from our grassroots network that we gain our strength. To ensure the effectiveness of our grassroots network, we create awareness and sensitize the world on the just cause of Tibet. We believe that young people can and must take responsibility to change our world for the better.
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One Response to Five Major Tibetan NGOs Condemn China’s Attack on Kirti Monastery

  1. Pingback: Take Action for Ngaba » Blog Archive » SFT India

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