CHINA-TIBET: TIBETANS CELEBRATE DALAI LAMA'S BIRTHDAY

Radio Free Asia (RFA) reported on July 10, 2017, that Tibetans living in Lhasa and in western China’s Qinghai and Sichuan provinces celebrated the Dalai Lama’s birthday last week with prayer gatherings and public picnics in open defiance of Chinese bans. In Lhasa, Tibetans conducted prayers and openly visited area monasteries, including the city’s central Jokhang temple, despite the presence of plainclothes security officers and other informers stationed nearby. In Qinghai’s Rebgong (in Chinese, Tongren) county in the Malho (Huangnan) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Tibetans closed their shops and burned incense to observe the July 6 event. RFA quoted a source in Ngaba as saying in Sichuan province, which together with Qinghai includes parts of historical Tibet’s northeastern Amdo region, 60 monks at Ngaba (Aba) prefecture’s Andu Yakgo monastery held prayers for the Dalai Lama’s health and longevity.  In Sichuan’s Kardze (Ganzi) prefecture, residents of Tawu (Daofu) county’s Nagtren village defied Chinese orders to shut down an annual horse race and incense-burning festival whose date this year coincided with the Dalai Lama's  birthday. Attempts to share photos of the Dalai Lama online were blocked in Qinghai’s Golog (Guoluo) prefecture, as authorities clamped down on social media and the internet.





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