Monk receives two year prison sentence

Gomar Choephel
Gomar Choephel
22nd February 2016

Gomar Choephel was accused of "disturbing social stability" after storing and sharing Dalai Lama pictures

A monk has been sentenced to two years in prison for storing and sharing pictures of the Dalai Lama. 47-year-old Gomar Choephel was sentenced on 17 February after being found guilty of “disturbing social stability” and “separating the nation” by a court in Rebkong County, Malho Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture.

Gomar Choephel is a senior monk from Rongbo Gomchen Thoesam Norling Monastery, located in Rebkong County, north east Tibet. He was arrested at his monastery on 10 July 2015, but was kept in detention for seven months until his trial. His family were informed that they would only be allowed to meet him ten days after his sentencing.

The costs of disturbing social stability

Gomar Choephel is currently being held at Drakmar Detention Centre in Rebkong County. He received his sentence on the same day that Shokjang, a Tibetan writer, was also found guilty of “disturbing social stability”. He was sentenced to three years in prison for his part in student protests.

Like Gomar Choephel, and numerous other Tibetan political prisoners, Shokjang was held in detention long before he was sentenced and only allowed to see his family briefly before beginning his sentence.

Take action

Chinese-occupied Tibet has some of the harshest restrictions on civil liberties in the world. Take action for Thardhod Gyaltsen, a monk sentenced to 18 years in jail for owning pictures and recordings of the Dalai Lama, prohibited under Chinese rule.