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Wednesday, January 20, 2021

China releases Tibetan man detained apparently for online critical writing

Pema Gyatso, a 35-year-old student at the Northwest University for Nationalities in Lanzhou. (Photo courtesy: RFA)
Pema Gyatso, a 35-year-old student at the Northwest University for Nationalities in Lanzhou. (Photo courtesy: RFA)

(TibetanReview.net, Jun07, 2018) – Chinese authorities in Gansu’s capital Lanzhou detained on May 25 a Tibetan university student who had contributed to an online literary journal without specifying any reason but released him on Jun 5, reported the Tibetan Service of rfa.org Jun 5. Pema Gyatso, a 35-year-old student at the Northwest University for Nationalities in Lanzhou, was stated to have been warned in the past about his online writings and it was not clear under what circumstance or on what conditions he has been released.

The report said Gyatso, known by his penname Sota, had for several years run a Tibetan Literary Forum on the Chinese social medial platform WeChat. Police were reported to have warned him in the past that some of his writings were politically sensitive.

One of the articles he wrote, on Feb 8, 2016, titled as “Tibet under a Burning Flame,” was stated to recall what he said were the courage and sacrifice of the many Tibetans who had perished in self-immolation protests in recent years.

“They have exposed the naked truth of the suppression and suffering of the Tibetan people,” the article was quoted as saying. “Any person of conscience and feeling would never forget why those [protesters] sacrificed their lives, or the reasons for their actions.”

Before joining university, Gyatso was stated to have worked as a teacher at a private school in Qinghai’s Yushu Prefecture. He was also reported to have taught Tibetan language to illiterate Tibetans during his winter and summer vacations from school. Besides, he has published poems in many Tibetan literary journals and magazines.

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