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Jigme Guri arrested; whereabouts unknown PDF Print E-mail
[25 August 2011] On 20 August 2011, Jigme Guri, a monk who in 2008 bravely gave video testimony about China's occupation of Tibet, was arrested by Chinese officials in Tsoe city, Gansu province. This is the fourth time Jigme has been seized and detained, the first being in 2006 after travelling to India for Kalachakra initiations given by the Dalai Lama. The next two instances were in 2008, the second of which followed a broadcast by Voice of America of his video evidence.

Jigme Guri Since his arrest there has been no news about his whereabouts and the reason for his arrest is not known. The UNs Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in Geneva has been alerted about Jigme Guri's arbitrary detention and disappearance.


With the news of Jigme Guris arrest and the recent tragic self immolation by Tsewang Norbu, there are deepening concerns about the Chinese authorities increasing crackdown in Tibet. It is feared that such heavy handed and repressive tactics will only further Tibetans already intense frustrations at the continued occupation of Tibet and marginalisation within their own country.

Action  |  Letter examples  | 
Background  |  Links  |  Join Tibet Society


Take Action
Where is Jigme Guri?1. Join the visual petition "Where is Jigme Guri?"
Use your freedom to stand in solidarity with Jigme Guri. To participate:
   a. Download & print the "Where is Jigme Guri?" sheet (PDF)
   b. Hold this sheet in front of you
   c. Take a picture
   d. Send the picture
   - upload directly to the
Where Is Jigme Guri? Flickr group

 
(if you have a Flickr account)
   - or email to Tibet Society at
This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it and we'll upload it for you.
   e. Ask your friends to participate.


The photos will be collected together and a special delivery action to Chinese officials will be announced soon.


2. Write to the Chinese Ambassador in the UK
to express your grave concern at the arbitrary arrest of Jigme Guri and call for his immediate release and ask for information of his whereabouts and the reason why he was arrested. See letter example below.

Chinese Ambassador:
Mr Liu Xiaoming
Embassy of the Peoples Republic of China
49-51 Portland Place
London W1B 1JL
Form of address: Your Excellency
Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it
Note: The Embassy may have temporarily disabled this email address (so your email is returned). If that is the case please try This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it and/or This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it .    

3. Send a copy of your letter to your MP and the Foreign Office
along with an urgent request for the Foreign Office to condemn this arbitrary arrest and to ascertain the whereabouts and wellbeing of Jigme Guri.
See letter example below.

Foreign & Commonwealth Office:

Rt Hon Jeremy Browne MP
Minister of State
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
King Charles Street
London
SW1A 2AH
Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

To send a question or request to the FCOs ministerial support team you can use an online form; this will be read and responded to by the Ministers policy support team. You can also leave a comment on the Foreign Office's Human Rights and Democracy China page (scroll to bottom of page).

To find out your MPs contact details go to www.writetothem.com (where you can also send your MP a direct email).

4. Send an email message to Gansus Party Secretary Lu Hao, demanding the release of Jigme Guri. (This action is organised by International Tibet Network, an organisation to which Tibet Society belongs.) Click here to send the message via the Free Tibetan Heroes website.

If you receive a response to your letters or emails, please let us know as this will help us to monitor the situation.


Letter examples

To Ambassador Liu Xiaoming

Your Excellency

I have read with grave concern of the arrest of Jigme Guri, a well respected and senior monk in Labrang Monastery, on 20th August at the 'Z-hong Yan' hotel in Tsoe city (Ch: Hezou), Kanlho Prefecture. This arrest appears completely arbitrary and not in accordance with your own rule of law or internationally accepted legal standards. I call on you to urgently call on your government to release Jigme Guri immediately and that he be allowed to continue his life unimpeded at Labrang Monastery.

I would also like you to seek information on his current whereabouts and assurance that he is in good health and not subject to any form of harassment or torture whilst in detention.

Finally, I would be very interested to know why he was arrested for no reason and if his arrest was legal vis a vis Chinas legal statutes and civil rights.

I look forward to your response. I have also written to my MP regarding this matter and sent a copy of this letter.

Yours sincerely
__________________________________

To Minister of State, Jeremy Browne

Dear Minister

I have written to the Chinese Abassador and expressed my grave concerns at the arbitrary arrest of Jigme Guri, a brave Tibetan monk who in 2008 gave video testimony about the situation inside Tibet (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ac-V82xAaUg) and called for his immediate release. I am now writing to you to ask that the Foreign Office condemns this arbitrary arrest and urgently ascertains the whereabouts and wellbeing of Jigme Guri.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Yours sincerely



Background
Jigme GuriOn 19 August 2011, Jigme Guri, along with other popular Tibetans such as the singer Sherten, was invited to a festival in Tsoe city, (Ch: Hezou) in Kanlho Prefecture, Gansu province. When he did not turn up for the event, his two students went in search for him. They reached his hotel ('Z-hong Yan') at around 7pm (Tibet local time), but found the hotel sealed off by police. They were prevented from entering Jigmes room, being told that Jigme was not there, however the two students could hear their teacher's voice from inside the room telling them both to leave before any more problems were created. Through the windows of his room, they could also see him lying on his bed.

On the following day Jigme Guri was arrested by officials from the Public Security Bureau (PSB)at the hotel. Those present when Jigme was arrested asked the police the reason for his arrest but were given no answer. Since his arrest there has been no news about his whereabouts and the reason for his arrest is not known.

Jigme GuriOn 21 August, nearly 40 Chinese security personnel and police conducted a thorough search of Jigmes room at Labrang Monastery. It is reported that 30 portraits of the Dalai Lama (10 large, 20 small) were seized, along with two computers, two laptops and a number of CDs. The rooms of his students and the monasterys storage room were also searched and a relative of Jigmes had to take police to Jigmes meditation room in Phukthee town located below the monastery. A further four pictures of the Dalai Lama were confiscated.

Jigme Guri (aka Jigme Gyatso or Labrang Jigme) was first arrested in 2006 after returning from India where he attended Kalachakra initiations given by the Dalai Lama. He was next arrested in 2008. On 28 March, on arriving back at his monastery from the market, he was detained for his suspected role in the 2008 Mass Uprising. He was subjected to torture and held for two months in a detention centre.

Later in 2008, Jigme was again arrested following Voice of America's Tibetan News services broadcast of a video in which he spoke of Tibetan people's aspirations and hopes and about the torture and inhuman treatment meted out to Labrang monks who were detained during the protests earlier in the year (2008). Jigme went into hiding after the video was aired, but was found after nearly two months. On 4 November a large number of People's Armed Police (PAP) and PSB officials in military trucks came to the Tibetan home where he was hiding and arrested him. He was released on 3 May 2009.

Jigme, a 44 year old monk, was born to a farmers family in Lhutang Village, Juicha Township, Sangchu County (Ch: Sangchu Xian) Kanlho Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture (TAP) Gansu Province. He is a much respected senior monk who was a former head of the Labrang Monastery's vocational training centre and a Vice-Chairman of the Democratic Management Committee (DMC) of Labrang Monastery.

The UNs Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in Geneva has been alerted about Jigme Guri's arbitrary detention and disappearance.


Sources: Tibetan Centre for Human Rights & Democracy (TCHRD) & Tibetan UN Advocacy


Links
Jigmes video testimony (in Tibetan)    
Jigme's video testimony with English subtitles (courtesy International Campaign for Tibet)
   
News articles: Asia News | High Peaks Pure Earth
 
Background
:
Tsewang Norbu: who died after self immolating in protest  against China's policies in Tibet.
Sherten: a very popular Tibetan singer who was voted best male Tibetan singer in 2009. View Sherten's song release in 2010 on youtube.


Join Tibet Society and be a voice for change
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