China Arrests Tibetan Monks, Nuns for Dalai Lama Poster

Tibetans walk past a reminder of whose government they live under at Dangba village on the outskirts of Lhasa, Aug. 2005 Photo: AFP/Frederic J. Brown

DHARAMSALA—Chinese authorities in a Tibetan region of Gansu province have arrested a number of monks and nuns for putting up a poster calling on Beijing to start a dialogue with their exiled spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama.

"A group of monks and nuns from the Labrang Tashikyel monastery in Kanlho Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Gansu Province, were arrested for putting up a poster urging the Chinese leadership to initiate dialogue with His Holiness the Dalai Lama," a source told Radio Free Asia's reporter in Dharamsala, home to the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan Government-in-Exile.

"The monks and nuns arrested were Thargyal from the Arik area, Jamyang Samdup from Drakmar, a monk named Sherab, and Chokyi Dolma, a nun from Gomang township...Nobody knows about their whereabouts," said the source, who called RFA's office from within Tibet.

Poster called for Dalai Lama talks

The caller said two nuns whose names were unknown had also been arrested in April.

"The reason for their arrest was putting up a poster demanding Chinese leadership to initiate talk with Dalai Lama to resolve the issue of Tibet on April 15, 2005," the caller from the Amdo region of Tibet said.

"Family members suspect that the arrested nuns and monks were detained in a jail in Kanlho. When their family members requested the local officials' permission to visit their relatives in prison, it was denied," said the source, who declined to be identified because of fear of retaliation.

"However, the officials offered to hand over money from the family to the prisoners."

The Dalai Lama fled to India after a failed uprising by Tibetans in 1959, nine years after China's People's Liberation Army marched into Tibet to establish Chinese rule there. Beijing has ruled the Dalai Lama out of Tibet's future, and punishes anyone in possession of pictures of him or his writings.

Original reporting by RFA's Amdo dialect reporting staff. RFA Tibetan service director: Jigme Ngapo. Translated by Karma Dorjee and edited by Luisetta Mudie.


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