Inside Tibet and elsewhere, ethnic Tibetans are today observing Losar, or Tibetan New Year. Above: Tibetan women pray around Labrang Monastery in Xiahe county, Gansu Province.
Three Tibetan Buddhist monks set have themselves on fire since Friday, in the latest reported self-immolations denouncing Chinese policies in Tibet and demanding the return of the Dalai Lama. The youngest was an 18-year-old named Nangdrol. From the Tibetan government in exile:
He died on the spot. Chinese police officers attempted to take away his body, but were prevented from doing so by the monks of Zamthang Jonang monastery. The monks later cremated him and performed all the necessary rituals and prayers for the deceased. According to eyewitnesses, while setting himself on fire Nangdrol folded his hands in a gesture of peace, calling for the return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to Tibet.
Police and military presence are high throughout the region, particularly at monasteries where these tragic acts of self-sacrifice have taken place. By various accounts, as many as 25 Tibetans inside Tibet have self-immolated in protest in the past two years.
Many Tibetans are abstaining from celebrating Losar, as an act of protest and of mourning for those who have burned themselves to death. In response, Communist Party officials in Lhasa have banned those boycotts, resulting in what are described as "mandatory celebrations" of Tibetan New Year. In essence, Beijing is forcing mourning Tibetans to party.
The English-language Global Times, owned by People's Daily (the Communist Party's official newspaper) published this rich line of Newspeak:
The country's Tibetan-populated regions are in a party mood as the Tibetan New Year, or Losar, falls today, striking a stark contrast with the call by the "Tibetan government in exile" to cancel celebrations.
The Losar holiday, which lasts two weeks, is followed by the 53rd anniversary of the Tibetan uprising, which took place on March 10, 1959. It's hard to imagine the climate of military intimidation and surveillance in the region ratcheting up any higher, but the uprising anniversary date typically brings just that.
In Dharamsala, India, the home of the Tibetan government in exile and the Dalai Lama, three Tibetans today began an indefinite hunger strike. Solidarity protests were held around the world.
Below, a monk in Gansu province holds up a photo of the exiled spiritual leader. In Tibet, this simple act is a crime.
More coverage around the web: Reuters, WSJ, VOA, NYT/IHT, WaPo. Louisa Lim's report from Tibet for NPR's All Things Considered is a must-listen.
(photos: REUTERS/Carlos Barria)
The Chinese government’s comment army generates nearly half a billion comments a year on apps and social networks, doing all it can to sway opinion in favor of the party. The vast message-managing operation spans the globe, reports Paul Mozur. The common belief that they are paid 50 cents per post leads people in China […]
Sovereign immunity prevents one government from using its courts to attack another, but Chinese state-backed industries are taking it to new places, arguing that sovereign immunity means that the US courts have no jurisdiction over Chinese companies whose products are harmful or whose conduct is negligent — and US courts are buying that argument.
Ricky from Inside the Magic writes, “This weekend Shanghai Disneyland began soft openings and that means the world has now had the pleasure of finally seeing a TRON ride come to life – and it’s brilliant. The Tron Lightcycle Power Run is a roller coaster that lets guests hop on the film series’ signature vehicles […]
Jared Sinclair developed the RSS reader app Unread, which made $10,000 in its first 24 hours on the iOS market. And we’ve all heard the story of Flappy Bird developer Dong Nguyen, whose creation was reportedly earning $50,000 a day at the height of its 2013 explosion. While those are rare examples, they’re also testament to the […]
If you or your company’s IT system are besieged by black hat cyber attacks, an ethical hacker might be all that stands between crippling damage and a company’s long-term prosperity. It’s no wonder that the market for IT security specialists is exploding. Certification is the key – so learn the tenets of ethical hacking and get […]
Your laptop and mobile devices are top of the line…so why are you trotting out that raggedy decades-old suitcase when you go somewhere? Time to up your travel game with a complete 5-piece Herschel Travel Luggage bundle…and we’ll even give it to you for free!Of course, you’ve got to win the Ultimate Herschel Travel Bundle […]