Young Tibetan father of two self-immolates protesting Chinese rule

Sangye Khar, in an undated photo. (Photo courtesy: RFA)
Sangye Khar, in an undated photo. (Photo courtesy: RFA)

(, Dec18, 2014) – A young Tibetan father of two has died after he torched himself in front of a police station in Sangchu (Chinese: Xiahe) County of Kanlho (Gannan) Prefecture, Gansu Province, on Dec 16, according to several outside reports. Sangye Khar, 33, said to be a father of two daughters, was reported to have carried out his fiery suicide protest sometime between 9 and 10 AM in the county’s Amchok Township.

He killed himself “in protest against Chinese policies in Tibetan areas,” Radio Free Asia (Washington) Dec 16 quoted a local source as saying, speaking on condition of anonymity. Tibet’s ‘butter lamp festival’, marking the passing away of Tsongkhapa (1357-1419), the founder of the Gelug (Yellow Hat) order of Tibetan Buddhism, fell this year on Dec 16.

China’s paramilitary police, the People’s Armed Police Force, were reported to have tried but failed to put out the flame. They later took away the man’s charred remains, ignoring repeated appeals from his family which belongs to the township’s Chung Nyuthang Village.

As happens when such incidents occur, Chinese authorities were reported to have cut off communication lines as a part of a security clampdown in the area. Restrictions were imposed on the movement of the local Tibetans.

The latest self immolation, 134th since Feb 2009, occurred three months after two others took place a day apart from each other. Konchog, a 42-year-old father of two, burned himself in front of a police station in Gade (Gande) County of Golog (Guoluo) Prefecture, Qinghai Province, on Sep 16. His chances of survival were said to be slim. The next day, a 22-year-old student named Lhamo Tashi carried out a similar ghastly protest action in front of the headquarters of Kanlho Prefecture in Tsoe (Hezuo) City, Gansu Province.


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