Tibetan Man Dies in Self-Immolation in China’s West

Posted November 20th, 2012 at 2:35 pm (UTC-5)
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A Tibetan man has died after setting himself on fire to protest Chinese rule of Tibet.

Tibetan sources tell VOA's Tibetan Service that 35-year-old Tsering Dhondup self-immolated near a mining site in northwestern China's Gansu province.

More than 300 monks are reported to have assembled to pray for him.

Sources say Dhondup often called for the return of the Dalai Lama and Tibetans-in-exile to Tibet, and for the release of political prisoners. He is the second Tibetan man in two days to die after setting himself on fire. On Monday, the 25-year old man self-immolated in Xunhua county in Qinghai's Haidong prefecture.

The latest incident raises the number of Tibetans who have self-immolated in protests to 78 since 2009, with 64 cases known to have resulted in death.

Many Tibetans accuse China's government of repressing their religion and culture. China says Tibetans enjoy religious freedom and benefit from better living standards linked to Chinese investment in underdeveloped Tibetan regions.

Beijing has accused the Dalai Lama of inciting the self-immolations to promote Tibetan separatism. He has said China must conduct a “serious investigation” into the self-immolations rather than placing the blame on him.