(TibetanReview.net, Oct03, 2014) – In yet another instance of responding to a peaceful protest with brutal armed violence, Chinese security forces have fired on a crowd of villagers in Tsang Thobgyal Town in Namling (Chinese: Nanmulin) County of Shigatse (Xigaze) Prefecture, Tibet Autonomous Region, on Aug 9. It left 13 people, including a pregnant woman, with bullet injuries, reported Radio Free Asia (Washington) Oct 1.
News about the incident reached the outside world only belatedly because China cut off internet and other communication links to the area when it happened.
Most of the residents of the Township’s 16 villages were reported to have taken part in the protest which took place in front of the township government offices. The area is the birthplace of the eighth Dalai Lama.
While most of the seriously injured were reported to have been taken to the County hospital, the others were admitted in the township hospital.
Local Tibetans had been pleading with the authorities to end the mining work as it was both sacrilegious and because of the environmental destruction and pollution. But their pleas went unheeded, with the township party secretary claiming that the mining company had permission from the central authorities and being known to take bribes from them. The company is said to extract gold, copper, and minerals said to be “needed for producing weapons”.
The firing provoked reprisal stone attacks by the protesters, with the result that there were injuries on both the sides, the report added.