(TibetanReview.net, Sep08’21) – Police in a historically Tibetan prefecture that is now part of China’s Sichuan Province have taken into custody eight more Tibetans in an ongoing drive against pictures of the Dalai Lama and other allegedly separatist materials or banned online activities, reported the Tibetan Service of rfa.org Sep 7. Those promoting the Tibetan language were also reported to be prime targets.
The arrests, which took place in Dza Wonpo township of Sershul (Chinese: Shiqu) County, Kardze (Ganzi) Prefecture, netted six monks and two laywomen, the report said.
Earlier, 59 Tibetan monks and laypeople were known to have been arrested over Aug 22-24 and 53 more afterwards as of Sep 29.
In the latest incident, Chinese police took away six monks from the township’s Dza Wonpo Monastery on Sep 3 after carrying out a targeted inspection of their belongings in their monastic living quarters.
Like in the case of the 113 who were known to have been taken away previously, the identity of the latest eight detainees, including the two laywomen, and the charges against them could not be ascertained due to the routine arbitrariness of the Chinese authorities’ actions. All were stated to have been taken to Sershul.
The report said many of the Tibetans arrested in the earlier raids, which began on Aug 25, were members of a local group promoting the use and preservation of the Tibetan language.
China’s aggressive implementation of Mandarin-based school and higher education under President Xi Jinping’s Sinization drive has led to a resolute crackdown on people and institutions focusing on promoting or teaching Tibetan language and culture.