Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Now China prosecutes Tibetan lamas as criminals

You'll remember the violent riots last year in Tibet's capital, Lhasa, which arose, as usual, to try and make the people's voices heard against China's rule over Tibet. Now, a respected Tibetan lama is accused of illegal possession of weapons and is on trail. Three others have already been sentenced to long prison terms by the Chinese government.

The lama, Phurbu Tsering Rinpoche, the first senior Buddhist monk to face a serious charge linked to last year’s demonstrations, is accused of illegally possessing weapons, his lawyer said. The monk, 52, led a convent in Ganzi, a predominantly Tibetan area of Sichuan Province. The lawyer said Phurbu Tsering Rinpoche had been forced to confess after four days of police interrogation and threats that his wife and son would be detained if he did not comply. Prosecutors say a pistol and more than 100 bullets and cartridges were found under a bed in Phurbu Tsering Rinpoche’s living room during a police raid. The monk has denied the allegation, saying he was framed.

I dunno about you, but judging by China's fucked-up account of humane rights violations and civil rights repressions and its horribly overzealous law enforcement policies and tactics, and the Tibetan monks' tendencies to avoid pain and suffering and conflict – I think I'll side with poor Mr. Rinpoche on this one. Somehow, the idea that the Chinese would have framed him just to try and quell the uprising and defame the Tibetan monks ... doesn't seem all that alien to me.

Actually, I'll be damned if those conniving little rats didn't plant false charges just like that.


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