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Lone Tibetan protester holding Dalai Lama’s portrait detained incommunicado

Lobsang Tsering walking along the 'Heroes Road'
Lobsang Tsering walking along the ‘Heroes Road’

Chinese authorities have detained incommunicado yet another Tibetan monk from the local Kirti Monastery for staging a lone protest against repressive policies in Ngaba (Ch: Aba) County in Ngaba Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan Province, in the Tibetan province of Amdo.

Lobsang Tsering, 20, was arbitrarily detained at about 4 pm local time on 7 June when he staged a lone protest walking along the main road of Ngaba County town, holding high above his head a portrait of the Tibetan spiritual leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama and raised slogans such as, “May His Holiness Live for 10,000 years!” and “Freedom for Tibet!” Local police personnel immediately took him into custody as soon as they saw him. Like many other lone protesters before him, Lobsang Tsering’s whereabouts and condition remain unknown.

In recent years, Ngaba County has witnessed relentless solo protests against Chinese government repression. The near-absence of any space for expression and assembly in Tibet is evidenced by the rising number of peaceful solo protesters holding Dalai Lama’s portrait and calling for his return to Tibet and freedom for Tibetans. Severe repression and intrusive surveillance have become the new normal in Ngaba particularly since the 2008 uprising when many Tibetan protesters were shot at and killed by security forces. Within Tibet, Ngaba County has witnessed the largest number of self-immolation protests.

Lone protester Lobsang Tsering's whereabouts remains unknown
Lone protester Lobsang Tsering’s whereabouts remains unknown

The main road of Ngaba County town where Lobsang Tsering staged his lone protest has become one of the most popular locations for solo Tibetan protesters. Majority of self-immolation protests took place at this location, which later became known among local Tibetans as the Pawoi Sanglam (‘Heroes’ Road’).

Lobsang Tsering, son of Mr Sherab and Mrs Yukho, belongs to the Ngore family in Lhade Ghabma village in Ngaba County.

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