US Urges China to Respect Religious Freedom in Tibet

Dharamshala: - The United States on Thursday (14th April) criticized China after violent incidents at the Kirti Monastery in Ngaba region of eastern Tibet and called on Beijing government to respect religious freedom and Human Rights of people in Tibet.
"We have seen that Chinese security forces have cordoned off the 'Kirti monastery in Sichuan Province' (Ngaba region of eastern Tibet). They've also imposed onerous restrictions on the monks and the general public," US State Department spokesman Mark Toner said.

"Many hundreds monks were taken in the early hours of the 12th of April. The news had spread among the local community over the past few days, that the Chinese were going to forcibly take Monks from Kirti Monastery," Ven. Kanyak Tsering, a Buddhist monk from exile based Kirti monastery told the The Tibet Post International (TPI)

"We believe these are inconsistent with internationally recognized principles of religious freedom and human rights. We continue to monitor the situation closely and are obviously concerned by it, Mark added.

According to Tibet sources, a serious situation has escalated recently in Ngaba county, Amdho region of eastern Tibet as the Kirti Monastery in the region has been sealed off by armed Chinese security forces.

The five major exile Tibetan NGOs based in India on April 14th, have condemned China use of armed military forces against peaceful people and called on the international community to speak out against China's current crackdowns on Buddhist monks from Kirti monastery. "I believe we've raised it with the Chinese, as we would raise any human rights concerns," Mr Mark told reporters when responding to questions over a serious restrictions Imposed on the Tibetan monks.

The situation worsened over the past few days, when the Chinese Government announced that; "Monks between the age of 18 to 40 must be taken to a different location, for ‘patriotic education'. Two old women over 60 years old are reported to have died during the confrontation with the army on 12th, but we are still trying to establish their names and places of origin etc.

The situation at the influential monastery has deteriorated since the self-immolation of Phuntsok on 16 March 2011 at Ngaba County, Sichuan, coinciding with third anniversary of the 2008 uprising in Tibet and to protest against continued repression by Chinese

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