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Chinese boss sees Tibet’s temples as potential propaganda allies

Jokhang Temple.
Jokhang Temple.

(TibetanReview.net, Apr04, 2015) – Buddhist monks and nuns should be seen as “friends” and their temples and monasteries in the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) must become propaganda centres of the ruling Communist Party, Reuters Apr 3 cited Beijing-appointed boss for the troubled region as saying. Writing in the influential fortnightly party magazine Qiushi, the region’s Communist Party General Secretary Chen Quanguo has called on the monks and nuns to learn to “revere” science and appreciate the party’s love.

He was reported to have said the government should see the more than 1,700 temples and monasteries and 46,000 monks and nuns in the TAR as “friends” who appreciate the party’s benevolence.

“Let the monks and nuns in the temples and monasteries have a personal feeling of the party and government’s care and warmth; let them feel the party’s benevolence, listen to the party’s words and follow the party’s path,” Chen was reported to have written in Qiushi, which means “seeking truth”.

Suggesting that the monks and nuns only needed the right guidance towards following the correct path, he has written, “Monks and nuns should not have to go out of their temples or monasteries to understand the party and government’s policies and social progress, or Tibet’s peace, stability and good fortune, so as to be guided to follow a path of revering scientific culture.”

Reuters noted that Chen had struck a similar line before, writing in late 2013 that Chinese officials in the TAR must build an “impenetrable defense” against separatism and befriend monks and nuns, who are generally revered by the devoutly Buddhist Tibetans.

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