A Tibetan monk has been ordered jailed after he published a book containing politically sensitive writings amid a crackdown by Chinese authorities on assertions of Tibetan national and cultural identity, sources said.
Tritsun, 26, was given a prison term of unknown length following his detention on March 11 while visiting his mother in Gade (in Chinese, Gande) county in the Golog (Guoluo) prefecture of Qinghai province, an area resident told RFA’s Tibetan Service on Wednesday.
A resident monk in Golog’s Tongkyab monastery, Tritsun had published a book on March 8 called Breath of Truth, in which he wrote about Tibetan self-immolation protests, RFA’s source said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
“He also wrote several articles dedicated to Tibetans who have sacrificed their lives for the cause of Tibet,” the source said, adding that a 20-page section of Tritsun’s book, titled “Strength,” has now surfaced outside Tibet.
About a month ago, Gade county police visited Tritsun’s mother and handed her a notice informing her that her son had been sentenced, RFA’s source said.
The notice provided no details of the length of Tritsun’s prison term or present whereabouts.
“His mother asked the police for permission to see her son, but this was refused,” the source said.
Calls seeking comment from Gade county police rang unanswered on Thursday.
China has jailed scores of Tibetan writers, artists, singers, and educators for asserting Tibetan national identity and civil rights since widespread protests swept the region in 2008.
Meanwhile, a total of 119 Tibetans have set themselves ablaze to challenge Beijing’s rule in Tibetan areas and to call for the return of exiled spiritual leader the Dalai Lama since the wave of fiery protests began in February 2009.
Earlier this month, a Chinese court in Qinghai province handed a five-year prison term to popular Tibetan writer Gartse Jigme after holding him in secret following his detention in January, according to Tibetan sources.
“The distribution of his book Courage of the King was cited as a reason for his detention,” one source said.
Topics covered in the book included self-immolation protests by Tibetans, Tibet’s exile government, the Dalai Lama, Tibet’s environment, and China’s policies in the region.
Reported by Chakmo Tso for RFA’s Tibetan Service. Translated by Rigdhen Dolma. Written in English by Richard Finney.