(TibetanReview.net, Jun16, 2015) – Qiao Shi, the Chinese leader who during a visit to Tibet in Jul 1988 had ordered “merciless repression” of all forms of protest against Chinese rule, has died. He died of illness in Beijing at 7:08 am on Jun 14, reported China’s official Xinhua news agency Jun 14, citing an obituary from the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC).
Qiao, who was 91, last served as the chairman of the National People’s Congress (NPC) Standing Committee from 1993 to 1998. He was also a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, China’s top decision making body.
Before that, he was the head of the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection from 1987 to 1992. It was while holding this position that he toured Tibet where there had been a series of peaceful protest rallies in capital Lhasa since Sep 27, 1987. Chinese police had already opened fire to kill many Tibetans while detaining thousands more. But following Qiao’s call, an officer was reported to have been heard ordering his men to “kill the Tibetans” when there was a demonstration at the Jokhang Temple on Dec 10, 1988.
The party obituary was reported to describe Qiao as an excellent Party member, a time-tested and loyal communist soldier, and an outstanding proletarian revolutionist, statesman and leader of the Party and the state, with this death being called “a great loss for the Party and the people”.