DHARAMSHALA: The latest Tibetan self-immolater has been identified as Wangchuk Tseten, according to sources inside Tibet quoted by Tibetan media. Wangchuk Tseten, a 30 year old father of three from Asey Gyechak nomadic region in Ngagrong county, Kardze (incorporated into China’s Sichuan province) set himself on fire on 15 April 2017.
According to informed sources, his body was completely burned after the self-immolation and Chinese police took it to an undisclosed location. His current physical condition is unknown. However, eyewitness accounts describe survival as a rare possibility. Wangchuk Tseten is survived by his three children and an aged mother.
After the self-immolation, Chinese police reportedly summoned a meeting of residents of the three regions of Asey, Lumo Ru and Horma where the authorities reaffirmed its previous order of compulsory possession of 3-4 different papers wherever people go. Besides, people living in those three regions were all detained for two days from 16th through 17th of April.
Despite the Central Tibetan Administration’s repeated appeals, at least 147 Tibetans have set themselves on fire since 2009. Most of the self-immolaters have called for freedom in Tibet and the return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to Tibet.
Responding to the self-immolation, Tibetan Political Leader Sikyong Dr. Lobsang Sangay said, “Last month on March 18 , Pema Gyaltsen, a 24 year old Tibetan farmer self-immolated in Kardze. Three years ago on this date, Thinley Namgyal, a 32 year old Tibetan self-immolated in Kardze. Such sacrifices by Tibetans in Tibet evidences that repression in Tibet under the Chinese rule are making lives unliveable. Therefore it is time the Chinese Government heed to the calls of Tibetans in Tibet who long for freedom in Tibet and the return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama back to Tibet. China must address the legitimate grievances of people in Tibet.”