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Fear psychosis grips Tibetans as China hikes crackdown on Dalai Lama photos, cultural protection efforts in two Sichuan counties

(TibetanReview.net, Oct30’21) – Although China had recently released the last three of the 121 Tibetans it had taken into custody in August but, violent interrogation, re-education sessions and the political crackdown has only intensified in Wonpo (Chinese: Wenbo) and Sershul (Shiqu) counties of the traditionally Tibetan populate prefecture of Kardze (Ganzi) which is now part of China’s Sichuan Province, said Dharamsala-based Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy Oct 29.

Cell phones of local Tibetans are still being seized. And they are told to feel gratitude to the Party and the nation, and oppose “the Dalai clique”, the centre said.

Parents are said to be made to sign undertakings not to allow their children to join a monastery before they turn 18 years of age.

All local community groups including those formed to protect Tibetan language and promote adult literacy have been ordered closed with immediate effect. Many of those detained in August belonged to this category, including a group called Wonpo Language Protection and Welfare Association.

Sixty of those taken away in August were stated to have had photos of the Dalai Lama, Tibet’s exiled spiritual leader either in their homes or mobile handsets.

The current crackdown is said to be focused on the entire Wonpo County and Denma Township in Sershul County, with the targeted objects being anything involving the Dalai Lama, human rights, and Tibetan independence. Internet surveillance and censorship are stated to have been intensified in recent weeks.

The situation has led to Tibetans in exile finding it impossible to contact families and relatives in the area as it could lead to arrests and imprisonments.

The Dzachuka area, which derives its name from the Dzachu river (Mekong) running through it and the focus of the ongoing crackdown, has a strong history of resistance to Chinese occupation rule and policies and support for the Dalai Lama.

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