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No information after police take monks into custody at gunpoint

September 12, 2016

Radio Free Asia, September 9, 2016 - Police in southwestern China’s Sichuan province have detained a second monk living at Thangkor Sockstang monastery, taking him into custody after threatening his roommates at gunpoint and forcing one of them to the ground, according to a local source.

Lobsang Sherab, aged about 35 and a worker in the store of the monastery in Dzoege (in Chinese, Ruo’ergai) county, was seized at night on Aug. 24, the same day on which monastery treasurer Gendun Drakpa was also detained, a Tibetan living in the area told RFA’s Tibetan Service.

Sherab and his roommates thought at first that the Chinese police officers entering their quarters had come to rob them, and shouted for help, RFA’s source said.

“But the security personnel pointed guns at them and told them to keep still,” the source said, adding, “One monk who resisted was forced down by five officers and was injured in the struggle.”

“Lobsang Sherab was then shoved into a vehicle and driven away without even being allowed to put on his clothes,” he said.

Both Sherab and Drakpa have now been missing for 17 days, with no word on their whereabouts given to family or friends, the source said. “There was some information that they were taken away towards [provincial capital] Chengdu, but no details are available."

"Their family members and other relatives are worried about their condition, but are helpless."

Reported by Kunsang Tenzin for RFA’s Tibetan Service. Translated by Karma Dorjee. Written by Richard Finney.

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