China: Concern grows over crackdown on Tibetan protesters

Amnesty International today condemned the harsh crackdown on peaceful protesters in the Tibetan capital, Lhasa. According to eyewitness reports, on 11 March, Chinese police used teargas and electric prods to disperse 500 demonstrators, who were seeking the release of fellow monks held after the previous day’s protests.

On 10 March, it was reported that 11 protesters, including nine monks, were severely beaten and detained outside Tsuklakhang cathedral in central Lhasa. They had been demonstrating to mark the 49th anniversary of the Dalai Lama’s flight from Tibet after his failed rebellion against Chinese rule. Some 50 monks have also been detained across the capital.

“Demonstrators have a right to protest peacefully. China violates international human rights standards in denying their freedom of assembly and freedom of expression,” said Amnesty International’s Asia-Pacific Deputy Program Director Tim Parritt.

“Amnesty International condemns human rights abuses wherever they occur: on the streets of Beijing or the mountains of Tibet.”

Amnesty International calls on China to release immediately all those detained for peacefully exercising their rights.