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China claims ‘no idea’ on monk it arrested for republishing books from exile Tibetan community

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(, Feb06’24) – Chinese authorities in the historically Tibetan region of Sichuan Province had arrested a Buddhist monk in Jun 2023 for having republished books from the exile Tibetan community and also for having contact with people outside the country, reported the Tibetan service of Feb 5, citing belated information from two unnamed local Tibetan sources.

It was not clear what books were republished and what the nature of the contacts were.

The report said the whereabouts of the monk, named as Lobsang Thabkhey, 54, remained unknown. He was reported to have served as the librarian of Kirti Monastery in the province’s Ngaba (Chinese: Aba) county when he republished and disseminated the books in question. The witnesses have spoken on condition of anonymity for safety reasons.

The Ngaba police station, on being contacted by Radio Free Asia, has claimed ignorance about the monk. This was despite the fact that he was stated to have been summoned several times by Chinese police before his eventual arrest.

China maintains especially tight control on information and channels of communication in the Tibetan areas in the name of fighting separatism, making it all the more difficult even to people within the country to get timely and proper information on developing situation.

Thabkhey is said to originally belong to the county’s Meruma township.


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