Update on Tibet Demonstrations, 11 April 2008

11 April 2008: Tight restrictions continue in Lhasa.

Tight restrictions continue to be imposed in Lhasa, including in monasteries such as Tsuglag-khang (Jokhang) temple. All monks remain detained within their monastery compounds. Lay people are not being allowed to visit the monasteries.

The food-supplies in-charge of each monastery (who are usually monks) are forced to put on civilian clothes when going out to purchase food supplies and remain under constant surveillance when leaving the monastery compounds.

24 March 2008

Drakgo (Ch: Luhuo) County, Karze (Ch: Ganzi) “Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture,” Sichuan province- China continues its anti-Dalai Lama campaign.

The protest by monks and lay people on 24 March 2008, in Drakgo was suppressed by Chinese authorities.

More recently, Chinese authorities have begun a signature campaign that gets people to deny their aspirations for the return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

In Sok-gen, Dzong-go and Dhilgo Towns, Tehor Township, Drakgo County, people were duped into believing that their signatures were needed for the release of the two senior monks from Chokri monastery who were arrested on 26 March. As a result, a group of Tibetans provided their signatures. However, later when the people came to know of the actual reasons behind the signature, no more signatures were provided.

During the signature campaign, the documents which Tibetans are being pressured to sign contain the following statements (possibly more).

    1) I protest any engagement in “splittist” activities, and I owe loyalty to the motherland
    2) I reject any support for the return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

Official letterheads (stamped but containing no text) from the concerned Chinese office were brought along by the authorities during the signature campaign.

There were also attempts to convince Tibetans that the recent demonstrations including the ones in Lhasa were instigated by His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

April 2008 (No specific date)

Gyalthang (Ch: Zhongdian) County, Dechen “Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture,” Yunnan province- Tibetans distributed posters.

In one particular region of Gyalthang County, many posters were distributed. The messages of the posters read, “through happiness and sorrow, we stand together.”

No specific date

China expanding military presence inside Tibet and its border regions

Ever since consistent demonstrations have taken place in all three traditional provinces of Tibet, China has deployed its military in all areas of Tibet and in all its border regions, including the Nepal-Tibet border.

China also has laid out plans to call upon its experienced and new local forces to assist the military in placing restrictions on people, until the summer Olympics are done.

In each of the towns in Sershul (Ch: Shiqu) County, Karze (Ch: Ganzi) “Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture,” Sichuan province, 10 military personnel and 70 local forces have been deployed to restrict people?s movement. Preparations are also being made for possible incidents in the future which may require more military to be called in.

In Markham (Ch: Mangkang) County, Chamdo Prefecture, Chinese authorities are investigating the backgrounds of each family, after which certain individuals are being called upon to serve for the local forces.