Teenage monk self-immolates in Ngaba
[14 February] A 19 year old monk self-immolated yesterday in Ngaba, eastern Tibet in protest against China's oppresive rule in Tibet. A young Tibetan who attempted to help the monk was also detained.
Lobsang Gyatso (pictured right), from Kirti monastery, set fire to himself in the afternoon of 13 February at the top of the main street in Ngaba town. Eyewitnesses said that Lobsang was "shouting slogans of protest against the Chinese government”. Chinese police extinguished the flames and were then seen to beat Lobsang as they took him away.
Lobsang is the eldest of four children and is from Cha township in Ngaba Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan province. Kirti monks in exile said Lobsang is "one of the best and brightest students in his class" and that he regularaly participated in monastic debates.
Two young Tibetans who attempted to help Lobsang were also beaten by the police. One managed to escape but the other was detained.
The condition and whereabouts of Lobsang and the detained Tibetan are unknown.
Lobsang's self-immolation is the 20th to have occured in the past 12 months and the eighth in 2012. Thirteen of the protestors are known to have died. All have undertaken the action to draw attention to China's ongoing hard-line policies in Tibet.
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