Self-immolation triggers brutal crackdown

Saturday, 14 January 2012

One woman shot, many injured, as Chinese security forces respond to 16th self-immolation

Another Tibetan self-immolated in Ngaba today and there are reports of ongoing clashes between Chinese security forces and local Tibetans – including monks inside Kirti monastery.

It is understood that the clashes were triggered when the body of a person who had self-immolated was removed or an attempt was made to remove them.

Free Tibet can confirm that at least one woman has been shot. Further unconfirmed reports allege that many people have been shot.

An eyewitness described the situation as terrifying, that “a strong gas” was used on the crowd and described how “many had fallen to the ground” and people were being beaten. Numerous people have been detained.

Stephanie Brigden, Director of Free Tibet said, “We understand that this situation is ongoing and that people in Ngaba are terrified.

“There have been large numbers of Chinese security forces, including the paramilitary People’s Armed Police, deployed there since the first self-immolation last year. Locals are frightened about how the situation will be resolved and there are rising concerns further injuries or fatalities.”

This is the 16th case of self-immolation in Tibet since March of last year [1]; 11 have taken place in Ngaba [2]. Four Tibetans have set themselves on fire in the last week [3].

Notes to editors:

[1] Details of previous self-immolations

[2] Map of self-immolations  


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

For further information and interviews please contact Free Tibet’s Director Stephanie Brigden


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