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Four Tibetans killed by police during mining protest PDF Print E-mail
[1 September 2010] Chinese security forces, on 17 August, opened fire on Tibetans protesting over mining activities in Palyul County, Sichuan Province, killing four and injuring 30 others, according to Radio Free Asia.

Approximately 100 local Tibetans, from Sharchu Gyashoe village, Palyul (Ch: Baiyu) County, Karze (Ch: Ganzi) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan Province, gathered outside a local government building on 13 August to protest about gold mining activities in the area. The village leader Tashi Sangpo, who led the protest, had previously written to the local authorities expressing concerns over mining in the area conducted by the Shanghai-based Kartin Company, including the impact on the environment and overcrowding due to the influx of Chinese workers. He called for an end to the expansion of mining and for compensation for the local community.

Some of the protestors were detained, which led to the arrival of a further group of Tibetans calling for the release of those in detention and a response from officials over the mining concerns. The protestors refused to leave until they received a response.

In the evening of 17 August Chinese security forces began to remove the protestors by using gas to render them unconcious and loading those incapacitated into a truck. Several Tibetans began scuffling with the police, who responded by indiscriminately opening fire, killing four Tibetans. Two policemen were also reportedly injured.

Two of the Tibetans who died, Soeso and Papho, were relatives of the village leader, Tashi Sangpo, who himself was shot in the leg. Around 30 Tibetans sustained bullet wounds, some critically, and several others were detained.

Forces from surrounding areas are reported to have been sent to Palyul County following the incident. Roads have been blocked and residents have had there movements restricted.

On 30 August, China's official state news agency, Xinhua, reported the incident, saying that one Tibetan, 47 year old Babo had died after being hit "by a stray bullet when police fired warning shots with an anti-riot shotgun". It said Babo had led a group of 30 villagers to protest the arrest of Fu Liang for illegally exploiting gold mines in the area. The Xinhua report also quoted a local government spokesman as saying the villagers wounded 17 police, four seriously, by attacking them with knives, clubs and stones.

News reports
AP (in Boston.com): China media: Police accidentally killed Tibetan (31 Aug)
Tibetan Review: 4 killed, 30 injured in firing on anti-mining Tibetan petitioners (29 Aug)
AP (in businessweek.com): 4 Tibetans fatally shot in mine dispute (28 Aug)
AFP: Tibetans shot by China police in mine dispute (28 Aug)
Radio Free Asia: Police Fire on Mine Protesters (26 Aug)


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