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Khenpo Jigme Phuntsok, Abbot of Serthar Buddhist Institute Dies

TCHRD received confirmed information that Khenpo Jigme Phuntsok, the Founder Abbot of Serthar Buddhist Institute died in the evening of 6 January 2004 in a hospital in Chengdu City, Sichuan Province. Khenpo was 72 years old. It is reported that he died in the military hospital “363” where he was earlier receiving medical treatment. As per earlier information received by TCHRD, Khenpo Jigme Phuntsok was to undergo heart surgery at the same hospital at 10 AM (China time) on 29 December 2003. It has also been reported that Chinese “work team” officials, stationed at the Institute since 2000, left the …

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A Tibetan Teacher sentenced to five years’ imprisonment term

TCHRD received confirmed information that Nyima Tsering, 65, a teacher, was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment term by Gyantse Intermediate People’s Court in June 2003 on charges of “inciting the masses”. Nyima Tsering and his accomplice, Sonam, 28, a shopkeeper, were arrested in December 2002 on alleged charges of distributing pro-independence pamphlets. Gyantse County Public Security Bureau (“PSB”) officials arrested both the men from their home when information last reached TCHRD in January 2003. In June 2003, Gyantse Intermediate People’s Court sentenced Nyima Tsering to five years’ imprisonment term and Sonam to six months’ detention. Both the men were then transferred …

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Prisoner on medical parole succumbs to torture inflicted in prison

TCHRD has learned through reliable sources the demise of Nyima Drakpa, 29, in his home on 1 October 2003. Nyima Drakpa, who was serving nine years’ imprisonment sentence, was released in early September 2003 on medical parole. At the time of his release from the prison, Drakpa was reportedly in severe health complications. Drakpa was arrested in May 2000 and subsequently sentenced to nine years’ imprisonment on charges of “endangering state security” and “incitement against the masses”. In late 1999, Drakpa pasted pro-independence posters on the gates of a Memorial Garden in Tawu County, Kardze Tibet Autonomous Prefecture (“TAP”), Sichuan. The posters contained slogans …

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