A threatening letter has been given to local Tibetans notifying them to handover their homes and land.
Locals who reside and own homes around the Guchu River, in Rongbo (Ch: Longhu), are now being forced to leave in the name of development by the Rebkong (ch:Tongren) County Government. Tibet Watch has received a copy of the house-confiscation notice (see photo) which states the purpose of the evictions as the need to modify, urbanise and beautify the area.
Chinese authorities often boast about the positive impacts their development and conservation programs are having in Tibet. However, these projects are often carried out without the consent of local Tibetans and often have undesirable consequences.
This has led some local Tibetans in the area to question the motive for this latest land expropriation demand. One Tibetan said:
Rebkong is gone. Developments, dams, train stations and power stations will be built by taking land from local people. The government has already taken land from villagers with minimal compensation. The prime motive behind this development is a plan for more Chinese to migrate to Rebkong. According to local officials this has been happening since 2013. Tibet is being turned into China.
This situation is not uncommon. Land-grabs by Chinese authorities have been going on for many years in different parts of Tibetan-inhabited provinces in China particularly Sichuan, Qinghai and the Tibetan Autonomous Region.
In 2015, Chinese authorities seized grazing land from twenty Tibetan families from Makor Village in eastern Tibet for a government-sponsored power plant.
Similarly, around 100 Tibetan women from Lhundrub County held a peaceful demonstration in June 2016 against a government land grab. The women were protesting against the destruction of farmland and the authorities' failure to pay any compensation.
Many Tibetan political prisoners are held in Chinese jails, some of them in secret locations. The Chinese authorities refuse to reveal any information about their whereabouts or current health condition and prevent them from contacting their relatives.
Help Free Tibet pressure Chinese officials to reveal their location, and push for their release!