Tibetan Nun Self-Immolates in Anti-China Protest

Posted October 17th, 2011 at 4:40 pm (UTC-5)
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A Tibetan Buddhist nun has set herself on fire in southwestern China to protest Chinese policies in the region.

The Tibetan exile network, known as Free Tibet, reported that the nun, 20-year-old Tenzin Wangmo, died Monday after lighting herself on fire in Sichuan province near the border with Tibet. The London-based group said she was from Dechen Chokorling Nunnery and was the ninth Tibetan, and first woman, to set herself on fire this year.

The group also said two Tibetans were shot and wounded by Chinese security forces during a protest in Sichuan province on Sunday.

Tibetan activists say police arrested seven other Tibetans during Sunday's demonstration. The Tibet Express publication says the arrests occurred as protesters shouted slogans demanding greater freedom for Tibet and the unconditional return of the Dalai Lama, who lives in exile in India.

There was no confirmation from Chinese authorities.

Free Tibet said a former monk at the flashpoint Kirti monastery in Sichuan province set himself on fire Saturday in a nearby market area to protest Chinese rule. The group said police quickly doused the flames and took the man away.

The U.S. State Department last week voiced concern about the self-immolations, and what it called the clear anger and frustration the trend represents. Washington has repeatedly urged China to respect Tibet's unique religious, cultural and religious identity.

China routinely rejects such warnings, calling them an interference in its internal affairs.