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Rousing Tibetan welcome for released protest leader

(TibetanReview.net, Apr05, 2014) He may be a criminal to the Chinese government which jailed him for six years for having led a Tibetan protest against its rule in his hometown of Meruma in Ngaba (Chinese: Aba) County, Sichuan province, in 2008. But to the local Tibetans, Tsedak Gonpo is a hero and they welcomed him as such when he was released on Apr 2 from Mianyang prison, Sichuan.

As Tsedak Gonpo reached his hometown of Meruma the same day, residents, including monks and nuns of the local religious centres, stood in line on roadsides to greet him with ceremonial welcome scarves, reported Radio Free Asia (Washington) Apr 3. They threw paper prayer-flags in the air while motorcades of vehicles awaited his arrival to escort him home.

Tsedak Gonpo was arrested on Mar 22, 2008 as part of China’s crackdown on the widespread protests that swept the region in the worst Tibetan unrest in many years. He was later sentenced on Nov 5, 2008.

Although tortured and ill-treated during detention and in jail, including with prolonged spells in dark cells, he appeared to be in fairly good shape, a source was cited as saying.

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