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Human Rights Update 1997

Freedom of expression restricted

According to a radio broadcast from VOA on 27 January 1997, the long-anticipated regulations on all publications has been formally declared by the Chinese Government’s State Council. Materials including books, radio, television and audio cassettes must first undergo a thorough scrutiny before they are permitted to be published. The publications should propagate the merits of socialism and educate the masses on socialist beliefs. The regulations on publications allow commentaries on the general functioning of the PRC government. However, writings which are considered to threaten the public interest will not be approved. The regulations also declare a stop on the publication …

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Profile: Chamdo monks imprisoned up to 15 years

Five Serwa monks, all from Chamdo Prefecture, are presently serving sentences of 12 to 15 years for pasting posters and shouting slogans calling for an independent Tibet and the long life of the Dalai Lama. They have been tortured and used as public examples of what can happen to those who disagree with Chinese policy. Chime Dorje, now 29 years old, is from Serwa village in Joju sub-county, under Pasho County in Chamdo Prefecture. His father, Phuntsok Wangdu, and older brother, Norbu, are both farmers and his mother has passed away. Pema Tsering, now 25, is from Gyabdo village in …

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Rinzin Wangyal sentenced to 16 years

According to unconfirmed reports from Tibet, Rinzin Wangyal was sentenced on December 13, 1996, to 16 years imprisonment. Rinzin (alias Rinwang), a 49-year-old worker at a cement factory in Lhasa, was arrested in August 1995 by the Public Security Bureau for political reasons. Prior to his arrest in 1995, Rinzin was arrested once before between 1966-67 for allegedly organising an underground movement and was imprisoned in Drapchi Prison. While in prison, he was regularly tortured and interrogated by the prison authorities. Rinzin was released from Drapchi Prison in 1982-1983. Rinzin Wangyal’s younger brother Tsedor, had been executed in 1970 for …

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