Tibetan Self-Immolates in China’s Gansu Province

tibet-burning-dec82016.jpg Tashi Rabten lies in flames on a street in Machu county, Gansu, Dec. 8, 2016.
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A Tibetan living in northwestern China’s Gansu province self-immolated on Thursday in the first such protest in Tibetan areas of China since May, Tibetan sources say.

The protest took place at about 7:00 p.m. local time on a main road leading from the Machu (in Chinese, Maqu) county center to the Machu Bridge, a local source told RFA’s Tibetan Service.

“Many who saw the protest said the self-immolator was praying to [exiled spiritual leader] the Dalai Lama,” RFA’s source said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

“Not long after, Chinese police arrived and took the self-immolator away,” the source said.

No details on the protester’s identity or condition were immediately available.

The protest brings to 146 the number of self-immolations by Tibetans living in China since the wave of fiery protests began in 2009.

Most protests feature demands for Tibetan freedom and the return of the Dalai Lama from India, where he has lived since escaping Tibet during a failed national uprising in 1959.

Reported by RFA’s Tibetan Service. Translated by Karma Dorjee. Written in English by Richard Finney.


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