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"We Tibetans are looking for a legitimate and meaningful autonomy, an arrangement that would enable Tibetans to live within the framework of the People’s Republic of China."

Tibetans continue with fasting and protest, situation extremely volatile in Nyachuka : Update

December 15, 2009

TCHRD News Release
December 14, 2009

The Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy (TCHRD) learnt from
various sources that the situation in Nyagchuka County, Kardze “TAP”,
Sichuan Province has been extremely tense and volatile. Large convoys of
armed forces and riot police in full combat gears are at the area to
contain the ever-increasing volatile situation on the ground.

The TCHRD learnt from sources that over 100 Tibetans from Nyachuka had
gathered at Nyachuka County government headquarter to press on about the
immediate release of Tulku Tenzin Delek Rinpoche to the Nyachuka County
government headquarter since 5 December. The gathered Tibetans were
refusing to leave the County government headquarters unless Tulku Tenzin
Delek Rinpoche is released from the prison. According the latest
information, the Tibetans are still pressing the County government
officials, although the deadline for petitioners and protesters to
retreat to their respective villages was expired on (3:00 PM, yesterday,
10 December 2009), the sources informed TCHRD that local authorities had
again advised people to retreat and agreed to look into the matter.
However, TCHRD has not received any further information on the latest
development on the ground.

Meanwhile, at another place called Thang Karma, around 300 local
Tibetans petitioners and protesters thronged the local government office
to demand the immediate release of Tulku Tenzin Delek. During the
petitioning, seven women collapsed and became unconscious (time and date
unknown). They are still known to be unwell.

On the other hand, those of 60 Tibetans previously rounded and detained
by the People’s Armed Police (PAP) on the night of 5 December 2009 at
the Nyagchuka County military garrison compound were fasting and
refusing to eat any food served to them unless and until Tulku is
released from the prison.
A few miles from Nyachuka County government headquarter base, at a place
called Na-rong, where over 1000 Tibetans were said to be blocked by
Chinese security forces from breaking up and staging a protest march
towards the main Nyachuka County government headquarter to submit their
petition to effect the immediate release of Tulku Tenzin Delek Rinpoche.

Latest information emanating from Na-rong, Thang Karma, Nyachuka suggest
that the protesting Tibetans are running out of food and warm clothes
and blankets to brace the chilly winter nights and relatives and
supporters were denied access to the protesters and petitioners for
delivering food and clothes.
Also according to sources, a group of seven Tibetans proceeded to
Chengdu, the provincial capital city of Sichuan Province to submit a
petition to the provincial government officials to demand the immediate
release of Tulku Tenzin Delek Rinpoche stating that he was “falsely
framed and sentenced by the Sichuan Higher People’s Court in 2002”.
However, on the way the seven Tibetans were arrested and detained at a
place called Thu-cheng (place near Chengdu city) where there is a large
prison where many political prisoners are currently imprisoned.

Background:

On 2 December 2002, the Kardze Intermediate People's Court in the Kardze
“Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture,”(‘TAP’), Sichuan Province, had sentenced
Lobsang Dhondup, a relative of Tenzin Delek Rinpoche, to death for
"inciting separatism", "causing explosions" and "illegal possession of
guns and ammunition". He was executed on January 26, 2003, despite huge
international outcry. ??Tenzin Delek Rinpoche received a death sentence
with a two-year reprieve for "causing explosions" and "inciting
separatism". Tenzin Delek Rinpoche, based at a monastery in
nomad-dominated Othok, was granted a two-year reprieve, then had his
sentence commuted to life in 2005.
Event:

On 5 December 2009, a group of seven Tibetans which later swelled to
around sixty Tibetans, mostly youth from Othok proceeded to Nyachuka
County government headquarter to appeal for an immediate release of
Tulku Tenzin Delek, stating that their revered spiritual teacher was
wrongly charged and sentenced by the Sichuan Higher People’s Court in
2002. ??It was on the night of 5 December 2009, petitioners who gathered
at County government headquarters for the entire day were rounded up and
taken to an unknown location.??Sources told TCHRD on the morning of 6
December 2009, motorbikes and clothes belonging to petitioners were left
unattended with bloodstains. There were also bloodstains on ground as
well. The petitioners are largely believed to be detained in a military
compound near Nyachuka County.??Thereafter Tibetans from various parts
of Nyachuka County have been flocking to Nyachuka County government
headquarters to obtain the release of around sixty Tibetan detainees.
However Chinese security forces on the way stopped them from reaching
the County Headquarter. Meanwhile a fairly large contingent of People’s
Armed Police (PAP) has been brought to place called Thang Karma (White
Open Field) practicing martial acts and military drills to intimidate
the local Tibetans.??Meanwhile, sources say that many elderly Tibetans
and children has been going to the Chinese government Township office at
Thang Karma (White Open Field) to appeal to the Chinese government to
release Tulku Tenzin Delek. ??Despite their petitions, Chinese officials
have been turning their deaf ears to their sincere and legitimate call.
Nonetheless, the local Tibetans are still holding on to their hopes for
an immediate release of their revered spiritual figure.
The following is translation of the Tibetan version of petition
submitted by Tibetan petitioners on July 15 2009, for the immediate
release of Tulku Tenzin Delek Rinpoche, with fingerprints finger
impression and signatures, published in woeser’s blog,
(http://woeser.middle-way.net/2009/12/blog-post_9787.html) a well known
Tibetan writer, poet: and translation of the text is at the website High
Peaks Pure Earth
(http://www.highpeakspureearth.com/2009/12/from-woesers-blog-people-of-yajiang-in.html)

We Do Not Recognise the Verdict Against A’an Zhaxi
We Want to Have a New Hearing with Regards to the Charges in the
Explosion Case

A’an Zhaxi (A-ngag Tashi, Tenzin Deleg Rinpoche) was born in 1949 in the
village of Degu, Lithang County in the Ganzi Prefecture. In 1983 he was
identified as the reincarnation of the Yajiang County’s Orthok
Monastery’s Lama Adong Phuntsok. Starting in 1987, he constructed Orthok
Monastery, Nyagchukha Jamyang Choekhorling, Tsochu Ganden Choeling,
Golog Tashikyil, Tsun-gon Dechen Choeling and many more monasteries.
A’an Zhaxi always taught people not to kill, not to steal, not to tell
lies, not to shoot animals, not to gamble, and he also formulated
religious tenets. This embodied a great benefit for the people in the
monasteries and in the area. Hence, in comparison to other Lamas, the
local people particularly trusted and respected A’an Zhaxi.

On 7 April 2002, A’an Zhaxi was arrested by Ganzi Yajiang County Police
accused of being one of the hidden instigators responsible for the
explosion on Tianfu Square in Chengdu. On 2 December 2002, Ganzi
Prefecture’s Intermediate People's Court sentenced A’an Zhaxi to death
with the sentence suspended for two years. Two years later, some said
that his sentence had already been changed to life imprisonment and
others said that there was no sentence at all, opinions were widely
divided. But his family and religious followers had never seen the
official court verdict or any notice concerning his case. Hence, there
was no way of verifying the details.
?The case against Lobsang Dhondup installing the explosives on Tianfu
Square and A’an Zhaxi being the wirepuller is a set-up, it is an act of
retaliation by the evil officials and lacks any proof or confessions.

1. No proof
Nowhere and at no time have there been any witnesses confirming that
A’an Zhaxi actually worked out a plan for Lobsang Dhondup to set off an
explosion, and neither has there been any witness who has heard anything
about such plans. Moreover, Lobsang Dhondup has never admitted or
confessed that A’an Zhaxi worked out a plan for him to set off the
explosion. The reason for this is: one of Lobsang Dhondup’s fellow
prisoners, who used to share a cell with him, recalls Lobsang Dhondup
once saying to him that A’an Zhaxi has never planned anything for him
and he has also never officially declared or confessed that A’an Zhaxi
had worked out a plan for him. The reason why Yajiang County accused
A’an Zhaxi is because they say that he excavated a cave to store the
explosives and they also came up with groundless accusations such as
that he is not a real monk but they have not provided the people with
anything proving his guilt.


2. A’an Zhaxi himself refuses to admit his guilt
Although there have been many false stories claiming that A’an Zhaxi has
already candidly confessed everything, it is still rather obvious that
he does not at all admit his guilt. On 2 December 2002, when the Ganzi
Prefecture’s Intermediate People's Court spoke the verdict, in the
presence of all, A’an Zhaxi shouted out “don’t say that I set up
explosives, I have never ever thought about this sort of thing”.
Afterwards, A’an Zhaxi wrote in a letter to Zirui’s people and his close
relatives: “I am not guilty, please appeal for justice for me”.
Moreover, at the end of 2008, when A’an Zhaxi’s younger sister Dolkar
Lhamo together with Zengtar and Tsering Dekyi went to pay him a visit in
prison, they also heard him say: “I absolutely did not work out any
plans; I don’t even know of any explosion, it would be very kind if you
can appeal for justice.” Especially on 11 July 2009, when Apapumu went
to see A’an Zhaxi, he said: “I am not responsible for these explosions
or any other illegal actions, they have pinned this on me, I have always
taught people that one should not harm any life, not even that of an
ant, how could I then possibly be responsible for such an action? If it
is possible to appeal, there is hope that I may be cleared of all
charges. When you leave please go to Zirui for me, tell my relatives and
all people of the six Orthok groups, tell everyone that I hope to be
cleared of all charges. So, you are in charge, call all people together
and do everything possible to help me overturn the verdict.

3. Officials plotted to frame
Even before the verdict in the case of the explosion, Ganzi Prefecture
and Yajiang County had often arrested A’an Zhaxi. For example, from 1998
to 2000, twice in a row A’an Zhaxi had to flee to the remote mountains
to take refuge. In the very beginning when he first established Orthok
Monastery and Nyagchukha Jamyang Choekhorling, some officials of the
Ganzi Prefecture, Yajiang County and Lithang District deliberately made
things difficult and obstructed the construction of the monasteries, but
because A’an Zhaxi went directly to the great Panchen Lama for help, the
prefecture, county and district authorities had to give permission.
Also, during the time when A’an Zhaxi fled to the mountains for refuge,
thousands of people signed or put their fingerprints on a petition to
the authorities to prove his innocence. The appeal went all the way to
the county, even to the central government and in the end the
authorities’ attempt to arrest him failed. When A’an Zhaxi returned to
his home town he was happily welcomed by thousands of people, who could
not be pushed off the stage by local authorities. Through this, mutual
apprehension sharpened by the day, the local authorities harboured more
and more resentment against A’an Zhaxi, he became the thorn in their
side waiting for an opportunity to retaliate. One 2 April 2002, they
then arrested A’an Zhaxi accusing him of being the mastermind behind the
explosions on Tianfu Square in Chengdu, but it is obvious that this is
not true.

In conclusion, there does not exist any proof with regards to A’an
Zhaxi’s sentence, there exists no confession, it is only an act of
retaliation of the local authorities against A’an Zhaxi. It is a set-up,
a frame-up and an entirely fabricated case. If you are out to condemn
somebody, you can always find a charge. If this case is not solved
justly, our Zirui region, A’an Zhaxi’s relatives and all the people who
follow him, regardless of whether the poor turn into beggars, whether
men or women, they will definitely not stop appealing for justice. Thus,
we sincerely hope that the impartial law of the central government will
make its way into this place which is shrouded in the dense fog of
conspiracy.

15 July 2009
By the people of Yajiang County, Ganzi Prefecture, Sichuan Province
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