Tibetan man slits throat in Lhasa protest

Police erect a fabric barrier after a man killed himself in a Lhasa temple
Police erect a fabric barrier cordoing off the area where a man killed himself in a Lhasa temple

26th June 2017

Man took own life shouting 'freedom in Tibet'

An unidentified Tibetan man has died after slitting his own throat near the Jokhang Temple in the Tibetan capital of Lhasa. The protest took place in the morning on Friday 23 June 2017. Before he took his own life the man shouted: "We don’t have freedom and rights" and called for "Freedom in Tibet".

Chinese armed forces and security personnel arrived quickly at the scene and cordoned the area off (as seen in photograph). The authorities have referred to the event as a suicide and have not mentioned any form of protest. Though the identity of the man is not yet known it has been confirmed that he died.

TIGHTENING GRIP OF CONTROL

No further information has been made available since the man’s death, highlighting the extreme restrictions that exist on any news coverage emerging from within Lhasa. In a demonstration of China’s capacity to tighten its grip in Tibet’s capital, authorities have recently imposed harsh controls on hotels, restaurants and a school.

Reports of protests are particularly rare in Lhasa due to the severe restrictions that have been imposed on the city and the difficulty of getting information out of the Tibetan Autonomous Region where Lhasa is situated.

The Jokhang Temple has been the scene of protests before. In May 2012 the city saw its first self-immolation protests when two Tibetans set themselves ablaze and subsequently died from their injuries. The temple is considered by many Tibetans as the most sacred and significant places in Tibet.

Take action

China's human rights abuses and interference in Tibetans' lives extends to trying to control their freedom of religion. The Chinese authorities even want to impose their choice of Dalai Lama on Tibetans. Join our campaign to push back against this blatant interference in Tibetan Buddhism.