EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: ASA 17/35/93
13 August 1993
Further information on UA 164/93 (ASA 17/20/93, 19 May 1993) and follow-ups:
ASA 17/21/93, 25 May 1993 and ASA 17/24/93, 17 June 1993 - Mass arrest/Fear
People's Republic of ChinaLobsang Yonten
(Tibet Autonomous Region): Gendun Rinchen
and new names: Lobsang Gyaltsen
and an unknown number of other Tibetans
According to a number of unofficial reports, Damchoe Pemo, the Tibetan woman
arrested in Lhasa on 20 May 1993, miscarried a week later after police forced
her to remain standing for at least 12 hours and beat her with electric batons.
She was said to have been in a critical condition in early June.
Damchoe Pemo, a Lhasa trader in her mid-twenties, was reportedly four or five
months pregnant when she was detained. According to one source, the incident
was believed to have taken place after she had refused to reveal names of Tibetan
underground activists during interrogation. She remains in Seitru Detention
Centre, north of Lhasa. Amnesty International considers her to be a prisoner
of conscience. Although a nurse has apparently been allowed to visit her in
prison every day since the miscarriage, it is not thought that she was
transferred to hospital at any stage.
Amnesty International is very concerned about Damchoe Pemo's state of health
and the lack of suitable medical treatment she is receiving. She miscarried
20 weeks into her pregnancy - close medical supervision is therefore highly
Damchoe Pemo was first arrested in 1988 and then in 1989 for her involvement
in a demonstration. She was imprisoned for an unknown period of time. Her arrest
in May 1993 was apparently on suspicion of being a member of a pro-independence
organization. Police had raided and searched her home following the arrest
on 15 May of her uncle, Lobsang Gyaltsen, a 33 year-old farmer from Nyemo,
west of Lhasa, who was also suspected of belonging to a pro-independence group.
Another source reports that on 23 June Damchoe Pemo's husband, Tashi Topgyal,
was also detained, although the circumstances of his arrest are not known.
It is not known where either of these men are being held.
A week before Damchoe Pemo's detention, human rights monitors Lobsang Yonten
and Gendun Rinchen were arrested from their homes. To date they are the only
two Tibetans whose detention has been confirmed by the Chinese authorities