(TibetanReview.net, Jan 23) – Three Tibetan youths were attacked by police with severe beatings and whisked away as they staged a protest march on Jan 20 in Dzogang (Chinese: Zhuogang) County of Chamdo (Chinese: Changdu) Prefecture, Tibet Autonomous Region. A woman was also held for suspected link with one of them. Their whereabouts remain unknown, reported Radio Free Asia (RFA, Washington, DC) Jan 21. There was also a bomb explosion elsewhere in the prefecture, the report said, adding there were no casualties.
The trio – Thinley Ngodrub, 24; his brother Thargyal, 23, and Pema Tsepak, 24 – had come from Punda town in Tsawa Dzogang. “They carried a white banner reading ‘Independence for Tibet,’ threw paper fliers in the air, and shouted slogans,” RFA quoted its source as saying. They had marched from Tsawa Dzogang for about 45 minutes towards the local police headquarters when the police attack took place. A woman named Dechen Wangmo, found in possession of Tsepak’s mobile phone, was also detained.
On Jan 21, women from Punda town marched towards the county seat to demand the release of the detainees. But they were stopped on the way and ordered back.
Earlier, on Jan 5, there was a bomb explosion at a government complex in Dengkok town of Jomda County, suspected to be directed against the authorities’ attempts to force the Tibetans to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the recently declared “Serfs Liberation Day”. Some buildings and cars were damaged, but there were no human casualties, the report said, citing a Tibetan source in India with Tibet connection as saying.
“The Tibetans in Jomda have been told to prepare a special cultural performance for the celebration,” the source, a Drepung monk named Jamcho, was quoted as saying. “But they have shown they dislike the assignment.”