Two more Tibetans die of protest self-immolation

Two more Tibetans died of burning protests in separate incidents, taking the total number of self-immolations in Tibet to 86 since 2009, according to confirmed information received by TCHRD.

Tibetans holding prayers in front of Kalsang Kyap's body
Tibetans holding prayers in front of Kalsang Kyap’s body

Kalsang Kyap, 24, set himself on fire in front of the county government office in Kyangtsa Township in Zoege (Ch: Ruo’ergai) County in Ngaba (Ch: Aba) Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous, Sichuan Province.

According to confirmed information received by TCHRD, on 27 November, at around 6 pm (local time), Kyap set fire to himself and raised slogans for long life of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Kirti Rinpoche, both living in exile.

On 26 November, a father of three, Gonpo Tsering, 24, died of protest self-immolation in Luchu (Ch: Luqu) Township of Kanlho (Ch: Gannan) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Gansu Province.

Gonpo Tsering set fire to himself at about 6 pm (local time) in front of the main prayer hall of Ala Monastery and died. While on flames, he called for the return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to Tibet and for ‘freedom and human rights in Tibet’, according to sources.

Monks and lay Tibetans took Tsering’s body to his village and held prayers and cremation rituals. Many Tibetans had come from Ala as well as neighbouring villages of Samtsa and Gyitsang to offer their prayers and condolences to the family of the deceased.

Sources say following the protest, a large number of local police and security forces arrived Ala after the protest and are now conducting investigation into the incident.

Kyap was the third son of Tapotsang household’s six children. Citing locals in the area, sources say Kyap was a man of few words but of friendly and gentle disposition. Some days before his protest, he had confided with a few friends about his decision to burn his body. But no one took him seriously.

After he died, Kyap’s body was taken to his home in Dowa Megey Village in Kyangtsa Township. Monks from Denpa and Gyelge Monastery conducted prayers and cremation rituals for the deceased at his home.

On the morning of 26 November, Kyap had returned to his village home from his nomadic camp in the mountain and left the next morning for Kyantsa township government office, which was 3 km from his village.

After the protest self-immolation, a number of People’s Armed Police and security forces came to Kyangtsa from the neighbouring Shagdom Township. Sources say restriction in the area has increased after the arrival of security forces.

Kalsang Kyap is survived by his father, Thogyal and mother, Achoe.

Gonpo Tsering is son of Wangyal and Namlo. He also left behind his wife Namgyal Dolma, 26, and three children – son Tsering Samdup, 6, daughters Tsering Dolma, 3, and Tsering Lhamo, 2.

to top