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Radio Free Asia: Tibetan Woman Detained in Ngaba Following Solo Protest

Monday, March 7, 2016

Radio Free Asia

■ Police in southwestern China’s Sichuan province detained a young Tibetan woman this week after she staged a solitary protest in her township opposing Chinese policies in Tibetan areas, Tibetan sources said.

Mangga, 33, was taken into custody shortly after noon on March 1 in Ngaba (in Chinese, Aba) county’s Meruma township in the Ngaba Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefecture, a Tibetan living in exile told RFA’s Tibetan Service.

“She had held up a photo of [exiled spiritual leader] the Dalai Lama and shouted slogans challenging Chinese policies,” India-based monk Kanyak Tsering said, citing local sources.

“Chinese security officers quickly appeared and took her away,” Tsering said, adding, “No information is available concerning her current condition or place of detention.”

One of nine siblings, Mangga has a 14-year-old daughter named Gangga Lhamo, who was left at home when Mangga staged her protest, Tsering said.

“Her father’s name is Tsepe and her mother’s name is Pema Kyi,” he added.

In trouble before

Mangga had been in trouble with local authorities before, Tsering said.

When Chinese authorities in 2008 ordered Tibetan residents of Ngaba to fly the Chinese national flag from their homes, Mangga refused, “for which she was detained for eight months,” Tsering said.

“She was held as a political prisoner and tortured,” he said.

Tibetan protester Mangga is shown in an undated photo.
Photo courtesy of Kanyak Tsering
“Now, the presence of security forces [in Ngaba] has been strengthened, and the Internet is still blocked, even though local businesses have asked that those restrictions be lifted,” he said.

Ngaba’s Meruma township has been the scene of repeated protests in the past, with Chinese police detaining two Tibetan women, Woekar Kyi and Dorje Dolma, last August after the pair staged separate protests calling for Tibetan freedom, sources said in earlier reports.

In December, two other Meruma residents were also taken into custody—one a student and the other a monk—apparently on suspicion of involvement in activities opposing Beijing’s rule in Tibetan areas.

Sporadic demonstrations challenging Chinese rule have continued in Tibetan-populated areas of China since widespread protests swept the region in 2008, with 144 Tibetans to date setting themselves on fire in China to oppose Beijing’s rule and call for the Dalai Lama’s return.

Reported by RFA’s Tibetan Service. Translated by Karma Dorjee. Written in English by Richard Finney.

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