Tibetan father of two dies in self-immolation protest
Sangye Gyatso, aged 27, set himself on fire at around midday (local time) today near Dokar Monastery, 10km from Tso City, Kanlho Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Eastern Tibet (1). He died at the scene.
Before setting himself on fire, Sangye Gyatso called out for the return of His Holiness Dalai Lama to Tibet and for freedom of religion and language in Tibet.
His body was carried back to Dokar Monastery where monks gathered to pray for him and was then removed to the nearby village of Dzeruwa where his family have gathered. Tibetans from nearby villages are also travelling there to offer their condolences.
There is now a large military presence at both Dokar Monastery and Dzeruwa village. Sangye Gyatso had two children; a seven-year-old son and a five-year-old daughter.
Free Tibet has received three photographs of Sangye Gyatso, which can be viewed online. (2)
Free Tibet Director Stephanie Brigden said:
“Sangye Gyatso’s protest demonstrates the absolute determination of Tibetans to secure their freedom, no matter what the personal cost may be.
“International governments must speak out to end the human rights crisis in Tibet.”
More than 50 Tibetans in Tibet have set fire to themselves to protest China’s occupation since March of last year (3).
Notes to editors
1.Chinese: Gansu Province
2.Photographic image of Sangye Gyatso:http://www.flickr.com/photos/freetibetorg/sets/72157631704328757/
3.Full list of Tibetan self-immolationshttp://www.freetibet.org/news-media/na/full-list-self-immolations-tibet
4.) Free Tibet press releases: http://freetibet.org/news-media/press-releases
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 occupation of Tibet and for the fundamental human rights of Tibetans to be respected.
For interviews and further information please contact Free Tibet’s Director Stephanie Brigden:
M: +44 7971 479 515
T: +44 207 324 4605