Restive Tibet on Lockdown

Phone, Internet cut after violent unrest
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 26, 2012 7:36 AM CST
Restive Tibet on Lockdown
A Tibetan activist wearing a mask attends a protest against lack of Tibetan representation in the ongoing border talks between India and China, in New Delhi, India, Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2012.   (AP Photo/Gurinder Osan)

Following a series of violent clashes in Ganzi, China appears to have put Tibet on lockdown. Phone and Internet have been cut, and military and police are pouring into the region to restrict movement. The west of Sichuan province, which borders Tibet and has a large population of ethnic Tibetans, saw at least two people killed and dozens more wounded in clashes between protesters and security forces on Monday and Tuesday. The leader of Tibet's exiled government today lambasted the crackdown, reports the AP, telling Beijing, "You will never address the genuine grievances of Tibetans and restore stability in Tibet through violence and killing."

The Herald Sun calls the recent unrest some of the worst since the 2008 protests. The official Xinhua news agency claims protesters were rioting, but a US activist group says police fired tear gas and guns into crowds of peaceful Tibetans. Also this month, four more people have set themselves on fire; at least 16 people have done so in the region in less than a year. (Read more Tibet stories.)

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