The Chinese authorities in Ngaba (Chinese: Aba) Prefecture, Sichuan Province, have sentenced two teenage Tibetan monks to 11 and 8 years in prison.
In the beginning of September 2012, Lobsang Tsultrim, 19, a monk at Kirti Monastery in Ngaba County was sentenced to 11 years in prison, according to a reliable source with close contacts in the region.
Another Kirti Monastery monk, Lobsang Jangchup, 17, was sentenced to 8 years around the same time, according to the source.
In the end of March 2012, both monks were detained from their monastic residence by local security officers on unknown charges. Their families and relatives had no information about their whereabouts until the news of their sentencing, which was received in the end of September 2012.
For over five months, no one had any information about the monks’ whereabouts or the place of their detention. The trial was held in complete secrecy in the absence of the monks’ family members.
Lobsang Tsultrim, of Zampatsang family, is the son of Mr Takho. He is from Soruma nomadic village in Choejema Township in Ngaba County.
Lobsang Janchup is the son of Mr Rinchen of Naktsangma family in Cha Township in Ngaba County.
Quoting sources in Ngaba, the source said the monks were detained on suspicion that they were involved in the 10 March 2012 self-immolation of Gepey, a friend of Lobsang Tsultrim and Lobsang Jangchup.
However, there is no information on the exact charges that led to their conviction. Their whereabouts and the place of their imprisonment is not available at the moment.