Police fire on Tibetans following self-immolation

Thursday, 25 December 2014

Kalsang Yeshi’s fatal protest on 23 December followed by clash

A monk was shot in the arm during a clash between China’s police and local Tibetans following the self-immolation of Kalsang Yeshi in Kardze Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, eastern Tibet, on 23 December (1). After his protest outside a police station, monks from Nyatso monastery where he studied tried to prevent security forces removing his body. Police deployed tear gas and opened fire with live ammunition, injuring the monk’s left arm (photo available, 2). There are unconfirmed reports of other injuries to members of the crowd.

Kalsang Yeshi's body was taken to the prefecture capital, Dartsedo (Ch: Kangding), approximately 150km from the scene of the protest, to prevent further disturbances, according to authorities. The monks requested that the body be returned for traditional funeral ceremonies. They were told by the authorities, however, that Kalsang Yeshi’s body had been cremated and the remains thrown into Dadu (Ch: Daduhe) river in Dartsedo.

The injured monk has refused to go to hospital as he is afraid of being arrested.

Free Tibet director Eleanor Byrne-Rosengren said:

“Tibetan protest has been met with gunfire repeatedly this year but that does not prevent Tibetans from standing up for their rights. Security services are adding both to the grief and the anger of Tibetans by denying proper funeral services to those who have died in self-immolation protests. Their violent responses to those who seek the basic right to honour their dead is further confirmation that Tibetan religion and culture is held in contempt by China - one of the most profound grievances of Tibetans under occupation."

Information provided by Tibet Watch.

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Notes to editors

(1) Free Tibet press release 24 December http://freetibet.org/news-media/pr/third-fatal-self-immolation-tibet-eight-days. Location: Dawu (Ch: Daofu) County, Kardze (Ch: Ganzi) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan Province.

(2) Photograph at https://www.flickr.com/photos/freetibetorg/15917767787/

Free Tibet is an international campaigning organisation that stands for the right of Tibetans to determine their own future. We campaign for an end to the Chinese human rights abuses and an end to the occupation of Tibet.