May 15, 2008

Kristof on Amdo

Nicholas Kristof on violence against monks in Amdo:

At Labrang Monastery in Xiahe, almost 10,000 feet high in the mountains, more than 220 Buddhist monks were arrested and beaten, local Tibetans said. The great majority have been released, but some are still hospitalized because of injuries. Some monks are hiding in the mountains, and they are all terrified.

“I was beaten for two hours with sticks, and kicked all over,” said a monk who was released after one night of imprisonment.

Last month, the Chinese authorities ushered a group of journalists here on a tightly scripted tour to show that Labrang was calm — and then 15 monks rushed up to the group. One was crying, and all said that their human rights were being systematically violated.

After the reporters left, those who joined that peaceful protest were imprisoned, beaten and in some cases subjected to electric shock torture, the monks here say. That is impossible to confirm, and Tibetan versions of events are sometimes exaggerated.

Nepal prepares to abolish the monarchy.

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