Two More Tibetans Set Selves on Fire

Another monk from Kirti Monastery in Aba Prefecture, Sichuan, has set himself on fire in an apparent protest against Chinese rule over Tibetans. the New York Times reports:

The former monk, Norbu Damdrul, was the eighth monk or former monk to set himself on fire to protest China since March. All the self-immolations have taken place in Tibetan areas of Sichuan Province that lie in the remote region Tibetans call Amdo. At least four Tibetans have killed themselves in the wave of self-immolations, which scholars of modern Tibet say are a new and startling protest strategy by monks.

The attempt at self-immolation by Norbu was the seventh one this year in the town of Aba, called Ngaba by Tibetans. All of them have involved monks from Kirti Monastery, an institution that was a rallying point during the widespread Tibetan uprising in 2008.

Reports by advocacy groups say at least 10 Tibetans were killed by security forces during protests in Aba that spring. Many of the bodies were brought into Kirti, where monks took digital photographs of the corpses and transmitted them to people outside China. The photographs have been shown to foreign reporters visiting Kirti’s sister monastery in Dharamsala, India, the seat of power of the Tibetan government-in-exile and the Dalai Lama, Tibet’s spiritual leader.

Since the 2008 uprising, tension has built around Kirti Monastery, and at least 300 monks were taken away by security forces one night this April. They were sent to undergo “patriotic re-education,” according to reports by Tibetan groups, and many have not returned.

Also reported today, a nun has died from self-immolation, the first woman to do so. From VOA:

A Tibetan woman has killed herself by self-immolation three kilometers outside Ngaba County of eastern Tibet (Chinese: Aba County, Aba Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan Province) on Monday around 1PM local time, said Tibetan exile sources with contacts in the area.

Tenzin Wangmo, the 20-year-old nun of Mame Dechen Chokorling nunnery (also known as Mame nunnery), called for the return of Tibet’s exiled spiritual leader the Dalai Lama and freedom for Tibet when she set herself on fire. She is reported to have died at the scene. The nun was from Nyitse family of Shakoma village in Ngaba.

(Listen to the report here)

Read more about self-immolations via CDT, including a recent report: “News of Tibetan Self-Immolation Incidents Censored Online