(TibetanReview.net, Jan 21) – Traditional gatherings during festivals have provided fertile occasions for staging protests against Chinese rule in Tibet, especially in the Amdo region. In order to pre-empt major protests during this sensitive year, China compelled Kirti Monastery in Ngaba County of Sichuan Province to cancel its annual winter debate session (Jang Gunchoe). It has also now ordered the monastery to hold its annual Great Prayer Festival well ahead of the traditional schedule, provoking protests that have led to at least one arrest.
Lobsang Kirti, 27, of Kirti monastery was arrested from a photocopying shop on Jan 15. He was suspected to be behind the posters seen pasted on the monastery’s premises. The posters objected to the Chinese authorities’ interference in the monastery’s traditional religious schedules, reported Oslo-based Voice of Tibet Jan 19.