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China arrests Tibetan for cell-phone contact outside her occupied homeland

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(TibetanReview.net, Mar07’23) – It is the season of additional surveillance in an already routinely tightly controlled Tibet and a young Tibetan woman has been arrested after Chinese police found her to have had contact with people outside her homeland after they checked her cell phone, said the Tibetan Service of rfa.org Mar 6.

Chinese Police arrested Yangtso, 23, in Shigatse county-town on Mar 2 after they demanded to check her cell phone and found that she had contacted and sent photos to people outside the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR), the report said.

It is not clear what photos she had sent to whom. But authorities in TAR and other parts of Tibet have recently been reported to have banned Tibetans from having any kind of contact with people outside the People’s Republic of China as a part of its Sinicization drive as well as so-called anti-separatist campaign.

The report said she was being detained at the local police station of Namling county, citing an exile Tibetan with knowledge of the incident but requesting anonymity for safety reasons.

“Yangtso’s family members have no contact with her at the moment,” the source has said.

China intensifies its security drive in Tibet every year in the runup to the Tibetan New Year in February-March and throughout the latter month when the anniversaries of the Mar 10 Uprising Day and the 2008 uprising protests are marked by Tibetans living in exile.

The report noted that during the Losar (Tibetan New Year) celebration days from Feb 20 to 26, authorities had launched cellphone checks and carried out home raids on Tibetans in Lhasa, Shigatse and Chamdo, the three largest cities in TAR.

Before that, the authorities were stated to have issued warnings against holding of events that China sees as endangering national security, threatening immediate actions in such cases.

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