Lone protest during Communist party celebrations leads to prison, raids and communication blackout
On 1 July, 20-year-old monk Lobsang Gendun was taken by security forces after calling for the long life of the Dalai Lama and freedom for Tibet during official celebrations marking the 92nd anniversary of the Communist Party of China.
His relatives and fellow monks have not been told where he is being held after his five-minute protest in Pashoe county in the Tibet Autonomous Region.
Home and monastery ransacked
Security forces raided the nearby Drongsar monastery to which Lobsang Gedun belonged. Nothing ‘incriminating’ was found.
Doors and windows were then broken during a raid at his family home. It is believed that pictures of the Dalai Lama were found in his room.
The entire county, including the monastery, is now subject to a communications blackout.
The real face of China
This heavy handed response to a lone peaceful protest comes just days after Gary Locke, the US Ambassador to China, was taken on a carefully stage-managed visit to Tibet.
The picture perfect image he was shown by his Chinese hosts is a gross distortion of the reality of life for Tibetans who live under the world’s longest military occupation.
Update 24 July 2013
Lobsang Gendun has reportedly been tortured in detention. His family and friends do not know where he is, but reports suggest he was taken to hospital by Chinese police and could not walk properly. His roommate Tenzin Thinley, 22, was detained by Chinese security forces on 1 July.
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