CTA President Expresses Concern Over Latest Case of Self-Immolation in Tibet (Update)

DHARAMSHALA: President of the Central Tibetan Administration Dr Lobsang Sangay today expressed concern over reports of a self-immolation protest at Meuruma, Ngaba County in northeastern Tibet.

A video is circulating on social media allegedly depicting a self-immolation protest by a Tibetan man near Kirti monastery in Ngaba county (incorporated into China’s Sichuan Province). The self-immolation took place at 6:00 pm on 23 December 2017.

The self-immolater is identified as 30-year-old Konpe from Chukle Gongma pastoral community in Cha village, Ngaba county. Police came immediately, extinguished the flames and took him to Barkham, reaching the hospital around 10 pm. But by 5 am on the morning of the 24, Konpe had passed away. The Chinese government called his family members to Barkham to collect his remains, and gave them some bones and ashes that they said were his. His bereaved family and relatives are now performing death rituals for him, although his father has been detained by the authorities in Barkham, saying that tens of thousands of Yuan were spent on medical treatment for Konpe.

Expressing deep concern at the self-immolation, President Dr Lobsang Sangay said: “Despite repeated appeals from the Central Tibetan Administration, at least 151 Tibetans have set themselves on fire inside Tibet since 2009. The Chinese government should realise that the cause as well as the solution to this wave of fiery protests lie with the Chinese government itself.”

“The Chinese government should address the legitimate grievances of the Tibetan people and review their failed policies that has engendered the grim situation and Tibetans resorting to self immolation to protest the Chinese rule in Tibet,” he added.

Konpe