Monday, April 18, 2011

China police blockading Tibetan monastery, say exiles

2,500 monks under house arrest at Kirti Buddhist monastery in Sichuan province, according to reports relayed from scene

Chinese state media have confirmed reports of clashes between monks and police at a Tibetan monastery in Sichuan province, but deny it has been blockaded.

The Global Times said "Chinese police intervened to control lamas that had stirred up trouble" at Kirti monastery in Aba county, western China.

Tibetan exiles said armed police surrounded the complex last Tuesday and refused to allow monks to enter or leave. The Dalai Lama warned late last week that the situation could turn "explosive".

The International Campaign for Tibet said hundreds of residents gathered outside Kirti last Tuesday fearing authorities would forcibly remove monks for a "patriotic education" campaign after the self-immolation of a young lama. Citing exile sources, it alleged that security forces beat protesters and unleashed dogs on the crowd as they forced their way through to the monastery, surrounding it and preventing up to 2,500 monks from leaving.....

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