last update: Apr. 26, 2008 -efa



BREAKING NEWS. April 25: A Tibet Table.

Storia del Tibet  (in italiano)

Geografia del Tibet (in italiano) – nella prossima versione

Breve bibliografia

Appendice 1 (in francese): Passages sur le bouddhisme lamaïste tibétain (Lambert 2007)

Appendice 2 (in English): Citazioni da “Tibet a defining issue for China” (Sisci, 11 Apr. 2008)

Appendice 3 (in English): i moti di Lhasa (aggiornati a TibetInfoNet, 14 Aprile 2008).


This Socialist Biopedia (a new onLine encyclopedia) item, very briefly illustrates some major past periods, contemporary episodes and problems in Tibet history and culture (geography will enter into a next update). A short mention is made to a few problems of interpretation as well:

1) The great historian Fernandez Armesto (2000) tells another story, different from the Dalai Lama and the People’s Republic of China (PRC) ones. According to him, Tibet across many centuries was an economic empire on its own, only weakened by an inadapt ecosystem base: the high plateau one. The case illustrates the main theme of his book, that challanges accepted views of history as a domain of pure freedom (Hegel), irrespective of natural constraints.

2) Lambert (2007, p. 462) advances an original hypothesis: early modernization as an anticolonialist weapon (success stories: Iran and Turkey, Japan and Thailand). Therefore he  identifies LATE MODERNIZATION  as an Asian, not specifically a Tibetan fact: it came only with the actual Dalai Lama first – then (we add) it was imposed by China’s central government. With the obvious backlash effects of an endemic uprising and Stalinist democides (more than 1 million est. postwar victims). As a province of the emerging Chinese power, Tibet exhibits much  more than an eternal centre-periphery dialectics within a basically homogeneous territory: exactly because of its peculiar history and culture.

3) Then a strategic issue for Chinese Colonialism: when did “their” Dinasties first absorb Tibet, 13th or 17th C? Van Walt Praag (1989) presents the Tibetan view (In the course of Tibet’s 2,000-year history, the country came under a degree of foreign influence only for short periods of time in the 13th
and the 18th centuries),  Sisci (2008) an independent one, and Chinese sources rewrite history on current winners’  point of view – as usual (Weil 1951).

4) Tibet uprising expresses the quest for independence, now framed in a geopolitical chess game:

– Loss of credibility of the Dalai Lama: since his moderate line of AUTONOMY WITHOUT INDEPENDENCE (model: Sudtirol in Italy) has not been met by the PRC, and has delivered no reform, all the Tibetan movement and even the majority of expatriates are now struggling for FULL INDEPENDENCE.

– Olympic boomerangs: the human rights\religion connection;  democracy variety and Totalitarianism held by a band of corrupted criminals; and: why tolerate whatever act of colonialism?

– East\West, North\South conflicts in one the most disruptive recessions in history (on the verge of financial meltdown, “Samson” Ben Bernanke  with Wall Street neoclassical Temple on his shoulders: and who’s Delilah? a Chinese athlete?). The Economist Beijing correspondent was in Lhasa during the March 14-15 uprising (on Bear Stearns bailout day, a milestone in economic history – anything shamanic?). He confirms there was curfew and martial law de facto from the 16th – not de jure this time (versus 1989-90), with a view to save the Olympics (The Eco., March 22; TibetInfoNet).


April 25th: a TIBET TABLE is announced. A historic Tibet’s New Deal, eventually closing the 1959 gap might sort out. Peace wins, hawks lose.


“I believe the important question is whether China is doing this as a public relations maneuver to respond to international pressure before the Olympic Games,” said Wang Lixiong, a scholar in Beijing who has criticized government policy in Tibet. “They want the Dalai Lama to help them relieve pressure before the Olympics. But is it a sincere move, or just a public relations move?”

Shi Yinhong, a professor of international relations at People’s University in Beijing, said the Chinese government did not want the talks to be “interpreted as a concession under duress.” He predicted that any discussions would be unlikely to bring meaningful breakthroughs.

“I doubt that both sides will change their fundamental positions,” Mr. Shi said. “If there is dialogue, this is dialogue for the sake of dialogue. Maybe both sides only want to impress the Western audience.”

As you see from the NYT, even between Beijing scholars opinions diverge (hopefully). Here is our modest opinion – a large, substantial re-editing of our realtime,  April 25 blogpost and reaction:


B-news: Hu Jintao IS READY TO DEAL WITH THE DALAI LAMA (official press communication).

This is both a Chinese Government tactical shift, and a strategic one at the same time(power’s art and strategies require some Machiavelli-Hegel dialectics: a Science Po lesson from the case study!).

(a) THESIS. On the one hand, Hu Jintao opens to the Dalai Lama because of the international pressure: he doesn’t want to lose his face from here to the Olympics, nor ruin and waste  the big party, ads, propaganda, etc.

(b) ANTI-THESIS. But, if his move is timely and not so late, as we believe, the international pressure’s inner ambiguity  is challenged as well. AND PEACE GAINS THE HAND. So called  human rights activists (a very heterogeneous, infiltrated and sometimes suspect galaxy)must ask themselves IF they were on the right or wrong side, being together with the worst Western Imperialist Hawks and against the tyran Hu Jintao: but not necessarily a Hawk at international and world scale (NOTABENE – a diagnosis of the PRC leadership is beyond the scope of this specific Tibet item: go to other sources, and an Arcapedia’s China item, when it’ll de done).

(c) SYN-THESIS. On the other hand, there is substance as well, in today’s implicit OFFER OF A TIBET NEW DEAL TO THE DALAI LAMA. The Chinese govt. (as we already said in this page) is well aware it has to change some details (NOT TOO MUCH) of the status of Tibet within PRC, incl. giving some formal, mutual role-status to the Dalai Lama. Historically and objectively, they are natural allies (DALAI LAMA AND HU JINTAO); if they are bravo, they’ll sign a pact (New Deal)) after some barganing. This Dalai Lama, an exceptional  charismatic leader and  personality, is a time-card, that no responsible Chinese leader should miss. They’ve lost decades, now the clock is on: pro-WW3 hawks, pro-Holocaust vultures are just there, waiting for the Tibet Table to fail, a peaceful New Deal to abort.

Who wins\loses this game hand, a Tibet Table opening?

LOSERS are mostly bad, evil ones in our view: first, beyond-Dalai Lama Tibet Nationalism, its extreme wing. Even a good one which might be overcome by a New Deal: the Tibet Govt. in exile AS AN INSTITUTION (not their people and ideals): it might end up self-dissolving, if the Tibet Table works and produces new institutional arangements.

MOST IMPORTANT and peace enemy no.1 and TODAY defeated: a fake, ambigous proTibet Campaign alliance promoted, through their obedient media, by extreme and declining (see A LESSON FROM HISTORY below) imperialist ANTI-CHINA forces = US neocon hawks; not necessailry the full, now fragmented and rotten neocon diaspora, incl. the repented ones like Brooks at the NYT. They want WW3 Apocalypse sooner than later: before China overcomes NATO military power, as – symmetrically – Chinese Hawks want the exact reciprocal, WW3 a bit later, sometimes in late 21th Century. The Tibet mess was a windfall profit for both pro-WW3 élites, since it introduced East-West hate (the same already instilled and disseminated on Islam\Christianity, for exactly the same end). By the way, you see the Cold War never stopped: its frontiers have been just  moving here and there, along geopolitical iso-power lines; proof is that secret services reduced employment only because of ICT, business as usual.

WINNERS are mostly, or at least potentially “good” players: the ones we prefer at Arcapedia. World peace, incl. sincere freedom, peace, pro-Tibet activists (BUT, if they are sincere and not stupid: next time they MUST avoid to join a front lead by Imperialist Hawks and Monopolistic Media). A paradigmfor other border issues, and so called “oppressed nations” (they are always Regions, in fact: except N. Ireland and another handful of cases). Hu Jintao leadership (CP and PRC): his timely move will cut the fake proTibet Campaign, hopefully (or- at least – help dividing the horrible confusion of peace activists and war hawks together, in the same, miserable Campaign). The Dalai Lama leadership.

NOTE: Some of the pro-WW3 hawks élites (East, Middle East and West), at dirty work in Afghanistan, Darfur, Iraq, Zaire and Zimbabwe, were likely also behind (proofs will perhaps emerge, sometimes – we only make a political analysis here)  the Tibet-occasioned hate: by (WEST HAWKS) running after the Olympic flame, without any acceptable, decent and sufficient reason, and then (EAST HAWKS) calling for anti-Sarkò, anti-Carrefour demos in China. Look at, and learn what is good for peace, from their cynical LR strategy: they run a significant risk of global nuclear Holocaust (much higher than a 10% Prob.), in order to destroy their mirror-image, the Other Hawk. Their brother.

If we were right (not sure: conspiracy is a bit too much, we dislike it), some capitalist forces  of various kind (diplomacy or the military, information monopolies and human rightsPasionarie), even independently (no plot) and cynically, jumped soon on the Tibet bandwagon. No decent motive, from Tibet, for an enlightened citizen to boycott the Olympics; the rational, real motives are about the illegal sources that feed their extra-profits NOT FROM TIBET, but from China as a whole: Chinese disciplined labour force without a Trade Union (Italian firms organize China trips for their workers, they return promising they also will become so disciplined and efficient), and slaves strictu sensu:namely – but not only – in the Laogais, that is where Auschwitz is open now, in red China.Tibet was the perfect false target where to channel the angry unionised Western working class, and the no-global youth.

Storia del Tibet

Although the history of the Tibetan state started in 127 B.C., with the
establishment of the Yarlung Dynasty, the country as we know it was first
unified in the 7th Century A.D., under King Songtsen Gampo and his
successors. Tibet was one of the mightiest powers of Asia for the
three centuries that followed (Van Walt Praag 1989).

• Monarchia indipendente fin dal 7° secolo, poi regime teocratico accentrato attorno al Dalai Lama: comandavano i monaci, in una dialettica monasteri\città,  spirituale\civile e contaminazioni buddismo\sciamanesimo – che rendono questa cultura un autentico, inalienabile ed incalpestabile PATRIMONIO DELL’UMANITA’.

• Dal XIII secolo il Tibet ha alternato lunghi periodi di autonomia a parentesi di dominazione. Fernández Armesto (2000) interpreta quello che considera economicamente un Impero Tibetano, nella sua chiave ecologica (disequilibri malthusiani popolazione\scarse risorse sull’altipiano). Aggiunge l’immagine scomoda – ad ambedue i contendenti oggi – di un Impero Tibetano poco pacifico e molto forte, che ciclicamente “scende a valle” per procurarsi risorse addizionali. Nel XVIII secolo la Cina impose il suo protettorato sul Tibet, che cercò di stabilire relazioni con la Gran Bretagna. Ma nel 1907 Londra e Mosca decisero che qualsiasi commercio con il Tibet avrebbe dovuto avere l’avallo di Pechino, che nel 1910-11 invase il Tibet, poi sostanzialmente indipendente fino al 1949.

• Nel 1949 Mao proclamò la Repubblica Popolare Cinese (PRC). Nel 1950 invase il Tibet, soffocò nel sangue nel ’59 una rivolta e costrinse alla fuga il Dalai Lama. Molte migliaia di tibetani furono massacrati, altri presero la via dell’esilio. Fonti indipendenti stimano 1.200.000 morti tra il 1950 ed il 1990 (cui si aggiungono, nel neo-Impero rosso, alcune decine di milioni di vittime han dei democidi maoisti). I monasteri vennero distrutti nel 1965-68: di 6200 ne rimasero 10. Nel 1989, poco prima dei fatti di piazza Tienanmen, scoppia una rivolta: Pechino impone la legge marziale a Lhasa per 15 mesi, da marzo ’89 a maggio ’90, e responsabile del giro di vite è proprio Hu Jintao, l’attuale presidente PRC.

• L’immigrazione crescente di cinesi di etnia han in Tibet, attirati dal lavoro e dagli incentivi del governo centrale, ha trasformato il Paese ed emarginato l’identità culturale dei tibetani, discriminati nel mercato del lavoro. Pechino ha investito molto in quella che dal 1965 è la Regione autonoma tibetana (un sottoinsieme del Tibet), migliorando le infrastrutture. Secondo le statistiche, il PIL del Tibet nel 2003 era cresciuto di 28 volte rispetto al 1978, partendo da uno stato di assoluta indigenza che fu sfruttato dai colonialisti cinesi, per presentarsi come nuova classe dirigente “più buona” dei monaci lamaisti.

• Per l’Economist, il dato medio va scomposto: solo il Tibet rurale ha beneficiato dell’export boom di caterpillar fungus per la medicina tradizionale. Per i tibetani, a beneficiare della crescita urbana sono gli immigrati han (ed i mussulmani di etnia hui, che controllano il mercato della carne). Il 3 luglio 2006 si apre la nuova  ferrovia Pechino-Lhasa, uno dei segni del nuovo. A 4000 metri d’altezza, è destinata ad aumentare gli scambi. Le autorità promettono che ciò abbasserà l’alto costo della vita urbana. Sarà?

• Dal 2002 al luglio 2007 vi sono stati sei round di trattative tra la PRC ed il governo tibetano in esilio. Secondo un mediatore, lo scrittore americano Laurence Brahm, esse hanno raggiunto un apice nel 2005.

Talks eventually foundered over China’s refusal to accept the Dalai Lama’s statements that all he wants is Tibet’s autonomy within China (The Economist 2008, p. 30)

• Il potere centrale credeva di corrompere l’anima tibetana, smorzare il separatismo con lo sviluppo, come nel resto dell’impero neo-confuciano. Ma ottiene l’esatto contrario, avendo sbagliato tutto il paradigma: troppo (o troppo poco?) materialista, pragmatico e storicista (fili rossi nel pensiero cinese). Lo ha rivelato, nella finestra di opportunità del “flagship meta-project” Olimpico, la rivolta etnica di Lhasa del 14-15 marzo  u.s. (non un solo negozio han della città vecchia rimasto intatto), diffusa a macchia d’olio in altri centri del Grande Tibet e con tibetani (es. il 17 marzo a Pekino, Central University for Nationalities). A rischio imitazione da parte dei mussulmani del Xinjang. L’estensione ed intensità della rivolta non ha pari dopo quella del 1959. Il 20 giugno 2008 la fiamma olimpica à attesa a Lhasa.

Geografia del Tibet


Breve bibliografia


Asia Times Online, 11 aprile 2008:  Tibet a defining issue for China. By Francesco Sisci

Anne Cheng (2000), Storia del pensiero cinese. Torino: Enaudi, 2 vol.

The Economist, March 22nd (2008), A week in Tibet, pp. 28-30 (by the only Western correspondent in Llhasa as the riots broke out).

Fernández Armesto, Felipe (2000), Civilizations. London: Macmillan. paperback 2001.

Emanuele Giordana (2008),


Edizioni Il Riformista

An instant book in Italian, just out now: http://www.lettera22.it/showart.php?id=8968&rubrica=146

The Government of Tibet in Exile

Yves Lambert (2007), La naissance des religions. Paris: Armand Colin

PRC Embassy, USA, Tibet Issues

Site francophone d’information sur la question du Tibet Belgio

Il Sole 24 ore, 15 marzo 2008 – ripreso dal blog Altri Mondi del 17 marzo

Elliot Sperling (2004), The Tibet-China Conflict: History and Polemics. Policy Studies 7. Washington: East-West Center

Tibetan Studies WWW Virtual Library Edited by Dr T.Matthew Ciolek

Tibet History Timelines USA

U.S. Embassy, Beijing, Recent PRC Scholarship on Tibet [A guide to Chinese-language works on Tibet].

Michael C. Van Walt Praag (1989), When was Tibet not Tibet? Spring 1989 issue of Snow Lion Newsletter and Catalog. Presentation of his book The Status of Tibet.

Wang Jiawei and Nyima Gyiancain (1997), The Historical Status of China’s Tibet. Beijing: China Intercontinental Press.

AUDIO _ 5’12” di intervista a F. Sisci, Radio Radicale, 9 aprile 2008: Bush a Pekino (co’ ‘sto far del si e del no …) e la strana riesumazione di un TELEGRAMMA DEL 1951 !!! Del giovin Dalai Lama a Mao. Perché?

IMMAGINI _ Julien Chatelin

Lhasa: The Lost Soul of Tibet
Julien Chatelin explores the question of cultural identity in a place free from violence—Lhasa, the capital of Tibet—but where a half-century of Chinese occupation has diluted the traditional way of life. Signs of Tibetan culture are inconspicuous or else exploited for tourism in Chatelin’s portrait of a city trapped in China’s stranglehold.     Photo GalleryArtist StatementBiography
Part of http://www.soros.org,  Moving Walls 11. A Group Photography Exhibition (OSI, NY Dec. 2005, and OSI, Washington, Sept. 2006). With photographs from four continents and a focus on Africa, the exhibition captures the Open Society Institute’s mission.

APPENDIX 1.  Passages sur le bouddhisme lamaïste tibétain (Lambert 2007)

A paraitre dans la prochaine version: Lambet 2007, pp. 458 et 462.

APPENDIX 2. Quotations from Sisci (2008), La Stampa corr. in Beijing. Asia Times ©

China doesn’t need to look to history to validate its present territory. Geopolitics provides a good enough motive. However, doing away with history when considering Tibet creates an empty space in modern Chinese ideology

Official Chinese history anticipates 4 centuries, back to 1279 under the Mongolian Yuan Dinasty, the incorporation of Tibet as a special region (e.g., Wang Jiawei and Nyima Gyiancain, 1997 – NdR).

However, the claim … is weak for two reasons. It is controversial that … the Yuan Dynasty is part of the “Chinese” tradition. (…) Moreover, (…) Thomas Bartlett summarizes (…): “The Mongol Yuan Dynasty exerted control on Tibet only through Tibetan religious leaders. The Mongols did not conquer Tibet or occupy it or rule it.”

(…) Things certainly changed with the Qing Dynasty (1644-1912), when Tibet was an integral part of a large game played between the Manchu, the Zunghar Mongols and the Russians. For decades, the Manchu and Zunghars competed over control of Tibet. (…)

the geopolitical reasons for sending troops to Tibet in 1949 could be more than enough to justify the present integration … However, … If 5,000 years is the standard, then Tibet has to be Chinese for at least 20% of its total history. Thus, we have the idea that Tibet was Chinese since the Yuan Dynasty, almost 1,000 years ago. (…)

In fact, the Dalai Lama accused China of carrying out a cultural genocide in Tibet, destroying or thwarting all cultural legacies. However (…) in the past 60 years, Chinese rulers have committed a “cultural genocide” on their own culture: they saw it as a necessary measure in the process of modernization and becoming an advanced nation. This brutal process is partly due to globalization, where local cultures disappear in one global melting pot.

Chinese can feel that they saved more of the Tibetan culture than they did of their own culture (…). After all, China was a historical melting pot that managed to digest the Manchurian Qing, the Mongolic Yuan and the Turkic Tang, so why not the Tibetans? (…)

Geopolitics also has to be tempered with less harsh concepts that are fully in line with the official Chinese [neo-Confucian, NdR] idea of social harmony. In other words, there must be good governance that gains the support of the people in and out of China.

The fact that Chinese government departments are working at adapting history to present political ends reveals to the outside world a general fear. With these stories, Beijing tells the world that the Chinese themselves first and foremost think they should not rule Tibet. This is perhaps the greatest and most real trouble for China.

APPENDIX 3. Lhasa revolt, March 10 – April 9, 2008.

Facts on Lhasa only; see the impressive view of the entire uprising from the same source:http://www.tibetinfonet.net/newsticker/entries In the original  text on their site, the UK based news service specifies in red, only the news verified by home research. In our blog, at least on some navigators, the Italics appear as red.
Wednesday, 09
April 2008
Qiangba Puncog, Chairman of the TAR government, announced that police have detained 953 suspects involved in the “4 March violence” in Lhasa.
(reported by  TCHRD, 09 April 2008)
Friday, 04
April 2008
Police issued their Number 13 most wanted list, bringing to 79 the number of people still sought for their roles in the 14 March riots. Lhasa authorities sent out a message by mobile phone to residents, offering a reward of 20,000 yuan (£1,300) to anyone who could offer information leading to the arrest of those wanted for the violence.
(reported by Times online, 04 April 2008)
Thursday, 03
April 2008
Dates unspecified in ICT report of 3 April: Some Tibetans taken into custody after 14 March have more recently been released from detention. Several sources reported that detainees were subjected to aggressive interrogation, as well as being severely beaten in custody and deprived of food and water. Other families have no idea of the whereabouts of their relatives or friends after they were detained.
(reported by  ICT, 03 April 2008)
Dates unspecified in ICT report of 3 April: Work units all over the city have been required to write denunciations of the riots and protests in the city and of the “Dalai Clique”, and support government policies in the TAR, moves that are likely to lead to increased resentment against the authorities.
(reported by  ICT, 03 April 2008)
Sunday, 30
March 2008
Lhasa municipal government officials described the city as calm on Sunday; text messages sent to residents telling them not to “believe or pass on rumours of unrest”.
(reported by  CNN, 30 March 2008)
Saturday, 29
March 2008
Panic and fear broke out on Saturday afternoon in the Barkhor area after armed police moved in to check the identity papers of people where rioting occurred on 14 March. People started running in all directions, and shouting, and Tibetan shops in the area were closed down as armed police surrounded the areas around the Ramoche and Jokhang temples. Reportedly, a new, peaceful protest occurred involving many Tibetans, possibly linked to an attempt by armed police to detain Tibetans in the Tibetan neighbourhood around the Ramoche and Jokhang temples. A text message was sent to cellphone users in Lhasa during the afternoon by the Lhasa Municipal Police which stated: “On the afternoon of 29th in our city, as the security department were carrying out checks, this caused some frightened citizens whose identification [documents] are not clear to run away. Please obey the law and please follow the rules, don’t create rumours, don’t believe rumours”.The incident occurred just after a 15-member group of diplomats from countries including the USA, Japan, and Slovenia left Tibet. Tibetans in Lhasa had reportedly been aware of the delegation’s presence.
(reported by  ICT, 30 March 2008)
A 15-member group of diplomats from countries including the USA, Japan, and Slovenia left Tibet following a stage-managed and controlled visit at the invitation of the Chinese government. Their movements had been tightly restricted by the authorities. Following their departure, authorities tightened security still further in the Jokhang area.
(reported by  ICT, 30 March 2008)
The Chinese government said the families of those 19 killed will each receive $28,500.
(reported by Washington Post Foreign Service, 29 March 2008)
A melee erupted during afternoon in the midst of hundreds of armed police who have been out in force since deadly rioting rocked the city two weeks ago. Armed police reportedly began massing shortly before 2pm to check identity papers of people in the area where the 14 March riot started; many Tibetans ran away rather than risk arrest. Security forces surrounded residential areas near the Ramoche and Jokhang temples; several hundred Tibetans staged a rally. Rumours spread of a riot breaking out; some shops closed; cellphone signals had been cut; one witness stated “everybody was in a panic” but saw no protests and streets seemed empty. Lhasa municipal police sent a text message to residents’ cellphones during the evening stating: “Currently the social order in our city is nothing abnormal”.
(reported by Washington Post Foreign Service, 29 March 2008)
Despite a massive Chinese police and paramilitary presence, protests erupted when several hundred Tibetans rallied around 2pm near Center Beijing Road. Shops near the central post ofice on Lhasa Youth Road were closed, as security forces surrounded the Tibetan residential neighbourhoods in Barkhor, Kama Kunsang, Ramoche, and the Jokhang temple areas. A witness reported that “People were running in every direction […] It was a huge protest and people were shouting.”
Another source reported seeing “fistfights”. The protest continued for several hours. Local government subsequently sent mass text messages using local cell phone companies to announce that the situation was under control and to warn against the influence of “divisive-sounding news and gossip”. The protest coincided with a day-long visit by foreign diplomats invited by the Chinese authorities.
(reported by  RFA, 29 March 2008)
Military checkpoints have been established at every intersection of every major road, but during the 28-29 March visits of the foreign media and diplomatic missions, military personnel and vehicles were kept out of sight. When the diplomats left Lhasa at around 1 pm on Saturday, security was built up again in the Barkhor area. A protest involving at least 80 people occurred in the Barkhor area that afternoon; it appeared to have been timed to coincide with the diplomats’ visit, but instead occurred after they left.
(reported by  ICT, 03 April 2008)
A large peaceful demonstration occurred at 2pm around the Barkor area and Ramoche temple, involving hundreds of protestors despite the presence of thousands of armed police who eventually suppressed the demonstration. Meanwhile, shops, restaurants and other businesses in eastern Lhasa were closed. Shortly after the demonstration, a text message written in Chinese was sent by Lhasa city PSB was received by“every mobile phone in Lhasa”. According to FTC’s translation, the text message stated:“In the after – noon [sic] on the 29th, March, when the Lhasa Municipal Law Enforcement Department Personals[sic] were conducting a security line-check, some mobile salesmen and some other people started running away without knowing exactly what Security personals [sic] were doing. But there was no unstable social order in the city. Please township people, do not believe the rumo[u]rs. Be relieved and stay working. Be clear to the rights and wrongs. Obey the law. Keep the rules. Criminal actions such as creating and spreading rumo[u]rs, persuading others to doing [sic] wrongs, disturbing social [sic] and sabotaging social stability, will be severely cracked down upon. Announced by Lhasa Municipal Police Station”.
(reported by  FTC, 31 March 2008)
Friday, 28
March 2008
The Chinese have condemned reports that they used excessive force against peaceful protesters, saying that the 19 deaths on 14 March were caused by the rioters. Champa Phuntsok, chairman of the Tibet Autonomous Region told visiting diplomats on Friday night that police have detained more than 414 people, and 289 turned themselves in for participating in the riot and of those, 111 have been released.
(reported by Washington Post Foreign Service, 29 March 2008)
Police closed off Lhasa’s Muslim quarter on 28 March, two weeks after [one of] the city’s mosques was burned down during riots. Officers blockaded surrounding streets, allowing in only area residents and worshippers observing the Muslim day of prayer. According to the China Tibet Information Center, there are an estimated 1,500 Muslims in Lhasa. A heavy security presence continued in other parts of Lhasa’s old city as clean-up crews waded through the destruction inflicted when days of initially peaceful protests turned deadly on 14 March.
(reported by Guardian/AP, 28 March 2008)
Thursday, 27
March 2008
A small group of foreign journalists were taken to Lhasa on a three-day government-organised triThe tightly scripted visit was disrupted when 30 monks pushed into a briefing being given by officials at the Jokhang temple on Thursday, complaining of a lack of religious freedom and denouncing official claims that the Dalai Lama orchestrated the March 14 violence. “What the government is saying is not true”, one monk shouted out; another said “They [Chinese security forces] killed many people”. The outburst lasted for about 15 minutes before government officials ended it. Baima Chilin, vice governor of Tibet, later told reporters the monks would not be punished. The following day, Fu Jun, head of the News Affairs Office of the Propaganda Department of the Tibet Communist Party, said the monks were spreading rumours. State TV showed the foreign journalists’ Jokhang visit but not the monks’ outburst.
(reported by Guardian/AP, 28 March 2008)
30 to 40 monks raging against China’s criticism of the Dalai Lama and state limits on their religious freedom defied government officials, stormed a carefully orchestrated visit by foreign reporters at the Jokhang temple. The“weeping and shouting” monks stood before Chinese authorities and branded them as liars, upset that a government administrator from the temple was “recounting how Tibet had been a part of China for centuries”; particularly incensed that the reporters were being escorted by Communist Party officials planted as monks. One young monk yelled: “Tibet is not free! Tibet is not free!” and then burst into tears. They seemed particularly anxious to convey that the Dalai Lama was in no way to blame for the recent violence. One said: “They want us to crush the Dalai Lama and that is not right”. Another added: “This has nothing to do with the Dalai Lama.” They told the reporters that they had not been allowed to leave the temple since the first non-violent demonstrations by monks from a temple on the edge of Lhasa on 10 March. Troops guarding the temple were removed the night before the visit. Government officials said later that the monks would not be punished. According to a lay Tibetan, the armed security guarding the temple had “disappeared” during the morning; he saw men burning incense at two altars outside the temple; recognising them as plain-clothed police, asked if he could enter the temple. One said: “Go in quickly. It’s open now.” He then witnessed a monk shouting and weeping in front of the foreign reporters. The eyewitness was ordered to leave as soon as the monks began shouting.
Later, the area around the Jokhang was sealed off by PAP personnel wearing helmets and carrying shields; only those who live in the narrow lanes around the temple were allowed to enter the area.
A journalist working in Beijing for a Western television station, and who was refused permission to visit Tibet with selected foreign journalists taken to Lhasa on a three-day government-organised trip, told RFA: “None of the major television media outlets were selected. The only exceptions were AP television, which only provides video footage without actual reporting, and Al Jazeera Arabic. Al Jazeera English was not invited”.
(reported by Times online, 28 March 2008)
Wednesday, 26
March 2008
China stepped up detentions in Lhasa and vowed tighter control over monasteries.
(reported by Reuters, 26 March 2008)
Sunday, 23
March 2008
A monk called Thokmey, from Kardze county, Kardze TAP, died on 23 March evening in Lhasa.
(reported by  CTA, 24 March 2008)
The first high-level delegation of senior Party and government officials to Lhasa since the outbreak of the protests arrived for a two-day visit, led by Minister of Public Security Meng Jianzhu. Meng told members of management committees at Drepung monastery, Sera monastery and the Jokhang temple that the Dalai Lama is “unfit to be a true follower of Buddhism”, and that the Party and government would “deepen education in patriotism” in monasteries.
(reported by  ICT, 03 April 2008)
Thursday, 20
March 2008
Lhasa City PSB issued a public notice listing 21 people ‘wanted’ as main instigators or offenders of recent protests in the city; photographs identifying 14 people including monks were issued. Official Chinese sources claim 170 Tibetans in Lhasa have ‘voluntarily surrendered’.
(reported by  TCHRD, 21 March 2008)
Tibetans must show ID cards to enter and leave the city; those who have residence permits are allowed to move around, those without permits are not; Tibetans without IDs, including nomadic herdsmen who do not carry ID, are detained in Lhasa, regardless of whether they demonstrated. Curfew still in effect; streets are abandoned; shops not doing much business; people staying home. Tibetans who go into town are searched. Tibetans can’t stay in contact with each other; cell phones have no signal or callers given a message that the phone they are calling is turned off when phones are still switched on; broadcasts by RFA and VOA have been jammed. Additional troops called in from China and Kongpo area. Chinese security personnel showing photos to Lhasa residents, asking for the identification and whereabouts of suspects. In Taring market area, three Tibetans seen to be beaten, handcuffed and taken away [believed to be on 20 March]. Lhasa resident reported: “People are getting arrested for saying even one sentence that they oughtn’t say”. Tibetan residents living in fear. Lhasa prisons filled to capacity.
(reported by sources to  RFA, 20 March 2008)
Lhasa city PSB issued a ‘wanted’ list of 21 people identified by the authorities as the main ‘instigators’ or ‘offenders’ of recent protests, including photo identities of 14 people, including monks.
(reported by  TCHRD, 25 March 2008)
Wednesday, 19
March 2008
On 19 March 2008, Lhasa City Procuratorate arrested 24 Tibetan protestors on a basis of pre-trial detention; it is already a foregone conclusion that they will be charged with serious crimes and will receive harsh prison sentences. It is most likely that the detained will be indicted within five days – an extraordinary pace compared to judicial systems in democratic countries – to send fear and panic to protestors to cease their activities.
(reported by  TCHRD, 19 March 2008)
Tibet regional government said that 170 people had “surrendered” by 10 pm on 19 March for involvement in the“Lhasa riot that killed 13 innocent civilians […] and set fires at more than 300 locations and attacked schools, banks, hospitals, shops, government offices, utilities and state media offices”.
Most of those who gave themselves in “claimed they just committed minor offences. Some said they were incited by other lawbreakers and others said they were forced to get involved”.
(reported by Xinhua, 20 March 2008)
Tuesday, 18
March 2008
Troops standing guard at main intersections, checking the ID of passers by; pay particular attention to Tibetans in traditional clothes who are stopped and searched; mass arrests occurred; raids by soldiers on Tibetan homes; Tibetans beaten with batons; teargas fired at bystanders.
(reported by Woeser blog/chinadigitaltimes, 18 March 2008)
Monday, 17
March 2008
Circa 17 March: the corpse of a Tibetan shot dead was seized by police from the family’s home before a planned funeral; they were told that post-mortems and other investigations will be conducted and all dead bodies from the recent unrest will be cremated together; families will be contacted prior to the cremation and will be allowed to visit cremation site after the cremation. The family was powerless to do or say anything.
(reported by sources to  RFA, 18 March 2008)
A Hong Kong businesswoman in Lhasa told RFA that on 17 March people were able to go out to buy food; many armed police standing guard on the streets, checking ID of some passers-by. The local government hasn’t asked foreigners to leave Lhasa, “but if you want to go, the Foreign Office will help you”.
(reported by  RFA, 17 March 2008)
The Lhasa People’s Hospital was damaged, but local Tibetans suspect it was damaged by the Chinese so that injured Tibetans couldn’t receive treatment. Tibetans taken to Lhasa hospitals are now being turned away.
(reported by  RFA, 17 March 2008)
Sunday, 16
March 2008
Lhasa residents warned to stay indoors; every Tibetan including Tibetan government workers are stopped and their IDs are checked; Tibetans confined to their homes; Chinese can move around freely. Tibetans who were arrested taken to Toelung and other jails in Lhasa area. Tanks and armoured personnel carriers in the streets; troops everywhere. Estimates from witnesses set the death toll up to 100. Authorities offered leniency to protesters who surrender by midnight Monday.
(reported by  RFA, 16 March 2008)
Detained Tibetans were paraded through along major streets and the number two ring-road on the back of two military trucks; on the back of each, 40 young Tibetan men and women had their hands tied behind their backs, heads forcibly bowed; each person was held from behind by a soldier armed with a rifle.
(reported by Woeser blog/chinadigitaltimes, 18 March 2008)
Any Tibetan leaving their home was detained.
(reported by sources to  RFA, 20 March 2008)
Reportedly at least 300 arrested during the day.
(reported by Woeser blog/chinadigitaltimes, 18 March 2008)
Circa Sunday 16 March 2008, Lhasa PSB officers arrested Ngawang Namgyal, a former political prisoner and a former monk of Drepung monastery, from his residence during a midnight raid on alleged charges of “inciting and supporting the Lhasa protest”. No further information at present.
(reported by  TCHRD, 25 March 2008)
A source told RFA: “Official warnings were issued to all Tibetan residents of Lhasa that all Tibetan houses will be searched for photos of the Dalai Lama and for Tibetans who were involved in the riots. They were warned that no one should attempt to stop the searches and arrests, and people are not allowed to gather in groups when arrests are made.” Allegedly, all Tibetan government workers now in different parts of China were told to report back to Lhasa within three days as they were needed to “secure TAR railway lines”. Failure to report in will result in “consequences”.Tibetans stuck indoors relying on state-run television news.A Chinese resident of Lhasa told RFA: “The compound has been sealed off, and they won’t let us out”.
(reported by  RFA, 16 March 2008)
Gunfire was still heard in Lhasa on 16 March.
(reported by  ICT, 16 April 2008)
Saturday, 15
March 2008
Extremely tense situation; shops remain closed; telephone lines and internet connection disconnected in many areas of Lhasa; heavy presence of armoured military vehicles and additional contingent of PAP paramilitary troops; Chinese authorities imposed curfew on Lhasa city; new check-posts on all routes into the city; Karma Kusang in the east of Lhasa and Nangdren Roads on the north side witnessed protests during morning. Higher People’s Higher Court, Regional People’s Procuratorate and the TAR PSB issued a notice demanding protestors to surrender by Monday at midnight.
(reported by  TCHRD, 15 March 2008)
De facto martial law in Lhasa, although not officially imposed; Lhasa streets filled with patrolling armed troops and tanks; all houses searched; hundreds of Tibetans arbitrarily arrested in ongoing house-by-house raids by security forces in Lhasa; all former political prisoners arrested and imprisoned; many youths arrested and beaten.
(reported by  TCHRD, 16 March 2008)
At 10pm, Chinese police backed by PAP personnel raided Tibetan homes in Lhasa area. Those without residence permits and those suspected for any reason have been taken away without explanation. Police searched the house of a family from Tsawa Pasho, Kham who were running a small stall in Lhasa; police confiscated 10,000 yuan [approximately US$1,418]; the father, Kalsang Gyaltsen, has two sons, Lochoe and Jampa, were all arrested because they did not have residence permits, even though their applications were pending. The daughter does have a permit; she was left in the house alone with no money, and does not know where her father and brothers are detained. Six members of a family originally from Dege, Kham, were arrested from their Lhasa home in the same courtyard; allegedly none of the members of this family participated in the protests.The Chinese authorities are arresting almost all young Tibetans, both male and female, and their whereabouts are completely unknown. Tibetans are being arrested for trying to leave their own courtyards.
(reported by  RFA, 15 March 2008)
Reportedly at least 600 arrested during the day.
(reported by Woeser blog/chinadigitaltimes, 18 March 2008)
Any Tibetan leaving their home was detained.
(reported by sources to  RFA, 20 March 2008)
Tibetan protesters detained in a jail behind the Potala Palace and four other prisons in the Lhasa area. If all known deaths added together, more than 100 Tibetans were killed. Chinese authorities imposed martial law on Saturday morning.
(reported by sources to  RFA, 15 March 2008)
A source reported to RFA: “On Chinese media and TV, they are talking of only ten Tibetans killed—and those killed were those who committed crimes. According to them, all this is the work of ‘the Dalai Lama clique’. There have been some clashes between Chinese and Tibetans on the outskirts of Lhasa in rural areas”.
(reported by sources to  RFA, 15 March 2008)
A source reported shootings occurring in Lhasa on Saturday; corpses and those seriously injured were taken to the TAR Security Office area; a reliable source reported 67 bodies – some were alive and most dead when they arrived. The source who spoke to RFAreported: “It was officially announced by TAR officials that martial law was imposed. Right now I can hear shootings. We saw many tanks. Sometimes they fire in the air to threaten the Tibetans. At some places, like the Karma Kunsel area [near Lhasa], they are firing right now”. Every Tibetan, even Tibetan government workers are stopped and their IDs are checked; Chinese are free to move around. Many Tibetans who were arrested were taken toward the Toelung area and several other jails in different parts of Lhasa.
(reported by sources to  RFA, 15 March 2008)
Date unknown, but believed to be soon after 14 March riots; resentment at the paramilitary presence around Lhasa’s monasteries prompted one monk at the Ramoche temple to hang himself.
(reported by Reuters, 26 March 2008)
Circa 15 March, armed police rounded up “hundreds” of suspects; municipal prosecutors issued 150 arrest warrants for “escapees” still at large.
(reported by  RFA, 17 March 2008)
The Chinese government issued an ultimatum to all demonstration participants in Lhasa and other areas, to surrender by 17 March. A directive from the TAR High People’s Court, stated: “Those who on their own volition submit themselves to police or judicial offices prior to midnight on 17 March shall be punished lightly or dealt mitigated punishment; those who surrender themselves and report on other criminal elements will be performing meritorious acts and may escape punishment. Criminal elements who do not submit themselves in time shall be punished severely according to law”.
(reported by  ICT, 16 April 2008)
Friday, 14
March 2008
TCHRD reported deaths of 25 Tibetans following clampdown on demonstrations in Ramoche temple, Jokhang temple and Thomsigkhang market, and hundreds of injured Tibetans hospitalised.
(reported by  TCHRD, 15 March 2008)
Extremely tense situation; shops and vehicles burning; roads into Lhasa and busiest streets sealed off; armed paramilitary forces patrolling the streets; despite large presence of armed troops, protesters continue to stage demonstration; sources confirm gunshots being fired to disperse protesting crowds.
(reported by  TCHRD, 14 March 2008)
Morning: Monks from Ramoche temple led a peaceful protest morning; a scuffle broke out between PAP forces and protesting Tibetans (monks and laypeople); all streets leading to the temple cordoned off by PAP forces; monks held inside.
(reported by  TCHRD, 14 March 2008)
Ramoche monastery badly damaged after Tibetans carrying photos of the Dalai Lama shouted pro-independence slogans. Local police stopped them, but the crowd – including monks and youths – joined in and attacked police; the army was called.
(reported by  RFA, 14 March 2008)
10am, around 100 monks from Ramoche temple staged a peaceful protest; blocked by Chinese armed police leading to minor scuffles; demonstration expanded to increase bystanders; vehicles and shops set alight in the commotion.
(reported by  TCHRD, 14 March 2008)
Peaceful protests turned violent at around 10am. A Tibetan source reported: “Tibetans are protesting in the Barkhor area, they ransacked Chinese shops and the police fired live ammunition into the crowd. No one is allowed to move around in Lhasa now”. Another Tibetan source reported: “We Tibetans had no weapons to fight back. When the Tibetans were gathered in front of [the] Jokhang, the Chinese fired at us. I have personally seen more [than] 100 Tibetans killed when the Chinese fired at the Tibetan crowd”. The dead included young Tibetans, both boys and girls. Some Tibetans were killed by Chinese [Hui] Muslims; Tibetans then destroyed a mosque and Chinese shops, especially in the Bakhor area. Tashi Delek, a restaurant whose Tibetan owners are believed to be pro-China, was also destroyed. Many vehicles were set alight. Official Chinese sources claim two hotel employees and two shop owners died in fires; unofficial estimates from witnesses set the death toll higher. Another witness said: “We saw two dead at Ramoche temple, two in the garden, two at the Ganden printing house, and those Tibetans who went to take food to prisoners in Drapchi Prison saw 26 Tibetans shot after they were brought in on a black vehicle”.Protests occurred simultaneously in several locations, with hundreds marching in different directions including the Barkhor area and Rangshong Jong Road. Protesters ran through the streets with traditional white scarves in their hands, shouting “Free Tibet”.Protests peaked early Friday amid a reduced police presence on the streets; military deployed in Lhasa area; several hundred armoured personnel carriers and tanks shooting into the crowds and fired tear gas; de facto martial law imposed; residents warned to stay indoors; curfew took effect at around 1pm; protests tailed off around 3:30pm when large numbers of paramilitary PAP were mobilised. By early evening Lhasa roads were blocked; workers stranded inside their office buildings.
(reported by  RFA, 14 March 2008)
Morning: almost 100 monks gathered close to Ramoche temple to protest against the recent suppression in Drepung, Sera, and other monasteries. The monks were stopped and beaten by police; laypeople respond with anger, resulting in a large protest involving tens of thousands of people. According to reliable sources from Lhasa PSB (Ch: Lasa gong an jiu), the order prohibiting police from firing weapons was lifted – from 14 March onward, troops and police were authorised to open fire on demonstrators.
(reported by Woeser blog/chinadigitaltimes, 18 March 2008)
Provisional list of known Tibetan casualties on 14 March (name, age, place of origin):Phurbu, 37, Lhasa; Sonam Norbu, 27, Derge, Kardze TAP; Azin, around 30, Palyul; Sonam Lhamo, 21, Palyul; Dhargye, 22, Damshung, Lhasa municipality; Kunchok Samphel, 21, Damshung, Lhasa municipality; Lhakpa Tsering, 21, Lhasa; Thupten Tsering, 24, Lhasa; Tenzin Samdup, 39, Lhasa; Rigzin Choenyi, 26, Shugseb nunnery; Lobsang Tsepel, 31, Sera monastery; Ngodup, 28, Tibet University; Lobsang Dolma, 23, Garu nunnery; Ngawang Thekchen, 20, Taklung Drak monastery; Dhondup Dolma, 19, student; Dechen Dolma, 57, Lhasa Drapshi; Phurbu Tsamchoe, 20, Lhasa; Tashi Dorjee, 22, Nagchu, Nagchu prefecture; Tashi Tsering, Bathang county, Kardze TAP; Kalsang Yeshi, Markham, Chamdo prefecture; Penpa, 29, Toelung, Lhasa municipality; Tenzin (female), 20, Toelung, Lhasa municipality.
(reported by  CTA, 24 March 2008)
Five employees huddling on the second floor of a clothing shop were burned alive when their store went up in flames.
(reported by Washington Post Foreign Service, 29 March 2008)
An eyewitness near the Jokhang stated: “Those who are dead sacrificed their lives for 6 million Tibetans. My disappointment is that we were not armed and the Chinese fired on unarmed Tibetans. The Chinese threw some poisonous gas and that gas made the Tibetans dazed and blurred. Then they were arrested and taken away. I also saw tanks in the area too, though I did not see many, but they were sent to threaten us. Right now Lhasa is quiet but I still see black smoke in Lhasa town. It was the Chinese army who fired on us.”
(reported by  RFA, 16 April 2008)
According to an eyewitness, the arrest of monks by Chinese authorities made many lay Tibetans join demonstrations: “…) Five girls carrying a Tibetan flag were said to have been shot in front of the Jokhang and an 18-year-old boy was found shot in the forehead”.
(reported by thisislocallondon.co.uk, 31 March 2008)
Thursday, 13
March 2008
Morning: nuns of Chutsang nunnery again attempted to march to Lhasa; allegedly did not return to their nunnery, where only a few senior nuns remain.
(reported by  TCHRD, 14 March 2008)
Restrictions imposed on the movement of all Tibetan students; around five students of Tibet University arrested by PSB officials; authorities recording the movements of students at the university’s entrance gate.
(reported by  TCHRD, 14 March 2008)
Wednesday, 12
March 2008
Morning: coinciding with 49th anniversary of Tibetan women’s uprising, around 100 Tibetan nuns from Chutsang nunnery, Lhasa, marched towards Barkhor Street for peaceful demonstration; blocked by PAP and sent back to their nunnery. No reports of arrests.
(reported by  TCHRD, 14 March 2008)
Circa Wednesday 12 March: Lhasa neighbourhood committees mobilised to inspect every household in predominantly Tibetan areas of the city, searching for unregistered monks and nuns sheltering illicitly in private homes.
(reported by  RFA, 13 March 2008)
Tuesday, 11
March 2008
Lhasa city authorities recalled all government department employees on leave to return to work immediately; issued a restraint order suspending all leave.
(reported by  TCHRD, 14 March 2008)
Chinese police fired tear gas to disperse a second day of protests in the Tibetan capital Lhasa by hundreds of Buddhist monks; an estimated “couple of thousand” armed police and PSB personnel.
(reported by  RFA, 13 March 2008)
Monday, 10
March 2008
Deployment of armed forces, including plain-clothed police and agents, reportedly maintained throughout the week in and around Barkhor Street.
(reported by  TCHRD, 14 March 2008)
A group of around ten people including monks (reportedly from Amdo and Kham regions, visiting Sera monastery) and laypeople led a peaceful pro-Tibet march from Tsuklakhang [the Jokhang] temple; carried Tibetan national flags, raised pro-independence slogans, distributed pamphlets along Barkhor Street. Immediately, protestors reportedly severely beaten and arrested by PSB personnel. Shops and vendors around Barkhor Street ordered to close; additional contingents of armed forces were deployed to the area; Tibetans warned against further protest; Tibetans’ activities more closely monitored.
(reported by  TCHRD, 11 March 2008)
Evening: homes of former political prisoners raided by authorities; searches for political material, i.e. CDs relating to US Congressional Gold Medal ceremony for the Dalai Lama, which have covertly been in circulation recently; electronic goods particularly computers, phones and Internet connections.
(reported by  TCHRD, 14 March 2008)
15 monks from Kardze and Amdo regions visiting Sera monastery, Jatrel Khangtsen, and arrested on 10 March on Barkhor Street were: 1. Trulku Tenpa Rigsang, 26, Lungkar monastery, Golog TAP
2. Samten, 17, Lungkar monastery, Golog TAP
3. Gelek Pel, 32, Lungkar monastery, Golog TAP
4. Lobsang, 15, Onpo monastery, Sershul county, Kardze TAP
5. Tsultrim Palden, 20, Onpo monastery, Sershul county, Kardze TAP
6. Lobsang Ngodup, 29, Onpo monastery, Sershul county, Kardze TAP
7. Lobsher, 20, Onpo monastery, Sershul county, Kardze TAP
8. Phurden, 22, Onpo monastery, Sershul county, Kardze TAP
9. Lobsang Thukjey, 19, Onpo monastery, Sershul county, Kardze TAP
10. Lodoe, 30, Onpo monastery, Sershul county, Kardze TAP
11. Thupdon, 24, Onpo monastery, Sershul county, Kardze TAP
12. Soepa, 30, Mangye (Mangdge) monastery, [?]
13. Tsegyam, 22, Kashi (Kabshi) monastery [?]
14. Thupwang, 30, Darthang monastery, [?]
15. Pema Garwang, 30, Darthang monastery, [?]
The 15 monks were joined by two unidentified laypeople, both from Kham, during the demonstration.
(reported by  TCHRD, 14 March 2008)
Nine monks from Sera monastery and two laypeople staged a loud protest in front of the Tsuklakhang [Jokhang] temple, waving banners and shouting slogans. Onlookers surrounded the protesters, keeping security officers at a distance; PAP personnel pushed through the crowd and detained the demonstrators.
(reported by  RFA, 10 March 2008)
Many monasteries in and around Lhasa surrounded by members of the paramilitary PAP. Authorities told a nunnery in the Lhasa area to lock its gates at 9pm to prevent the nuns from leaving.
(reported by  RFA, 10 March 2008)

One Response

  1. Your blog is interesting!

    Keep up the good work!

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