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Chinese police station attacked in Tibetan area

March 23, 2009

March 22, 2009

BEIJING, March 22 (Reuters) -- Chinese police
have arrested six people after hundreds of
residents, including monks, rioted and attacked a
police station in an ethnic Tibetan part of the
western province of Qinghai, state media said on Sunday.

The official Xinhua news agency said people had
been "deceived by rumours" about the
disappearance of a man, Zhaxi Sangwu, who had
earlier been detained on suspicion of engaging in
Tibet independence activities.

On Saturday, a crowd "assaulted policemen and
government staff. Some government staff were
slightly injured," the report added. Calm had
returned to the area, Xinhua said.

It said Zhaxi Sangwu had "managed to run away
from the police station on Saturday on the excuse
of using the bathroom". The man apparently swam
across a river to escape and was still missing, the report added.

Rioting broke out in Tibet's regional capital
Lhasa on March 14 last year after days of
protests against Chinese rule by Buddhist monks,
killing 19 people and sparking waves of protests across Tibetan areas.

Groups of Tibetan exiles say more than 200 people died in a crackdown.

A year later, a tight web of troops and police
across Tibetan areas has apparently helped deter any flare-up of unrest.

A trickle of isolated protests in recent weeks,
including a monk who set himself on fire at the
Kirti monastery in western Sichuan and a bomb
thrown at a government office, which caused no
casualties, suggest lingering discontent.
(Reporting by Ben Blanchard, Editing by Dean Yates)
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