Dalai Lama clique instigates self-immolation: CCTV documentary

Source:Global Times Published: 2013-5-18 0:33:01

A documentary by State broadcaster China Central Television (CCTV) has revealed how the Dalai Lama clique manipulated self-immolations in China's Tibetan-inhabited areas.

The documentary, which was aired on Thursday evening, was created through in-depth research and interviews conducted by CCTV reporters in areas where the incidents took place.

In March, Banmajia, a 26-year-old villager, attempted to carry out a self-immolation in Seda county, Garze Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Southwest China's Sichuan Province, but was stopped by police.

Local police found a suicide note written by him together with dozens of photocopies of the note. Banmajia said he wrote the suicide note in accordance with the so-called Self-immolation Guide, which circulated on the Internet.

The failed self-immolation brought this "guide" to light.

The alleged author of the guide is Lhamo Je, who had been a "member of parliament" for two terms in the "parliament" of the Dalai clique and now still has an important position in its "educational system."

CCTV said there is no doubt that the guide is irrefutable evidence of the Dalai clique's manipulation of self-immolations.

Zhang Yun, a research fellow with the China Tibetology Research Center, told CCTV the guide was well orchestrated, and showed the clique has been preparing to incite self-immolations for a long time.

The guide advocates the idea that self-immolators are "great and honorable fearless heroes" and that "both male and female heroes" should be ready at all times to make a sacrifice for the "just cause."

Zhabai, the first self-immolator in Sichuan's Tibetan-inhabited area, was hailed as a hero by the Dalai clique. Zhabai, a monk from Kirti Monastery in Aba, had been mocked by other monks for not taking part in the violence in March 2008.

So to expunge the humiliation, he carried out the self-immolation in 2009. The Dalai clique then made a song to pay tribute to Zhabai.

In March 2011, Phuntsog, another monk from Kirti Monastery, immolated himself at a crossing outside the monastery, following the example of Zhabai.

Three days after Phuntsog's self-immolation, the Dalai Lama said at an event in Dharamsala, India that Phuntsog was a "hero who protested against China's tyranny," setting the tone for future incidents.

According to CCTV, some of the self-immolators had been punished in the past for theft, looting, gambling and whoring, and some had disabilities or encountered hardships in their lives. They chose to immolate themselves due to instigations by overseas religious leaders, hoping to obtain blessings from them after their deaths.

In addition to mobilization, the guide also taught self-immolators to "pick important days and places," "leave written or recorded last words," and "ask a couple of trustworthy people to help record videos and take photos."

CCTV said the Dalai clique had fabricated last words for some self-immolators.

The documentary quoted police as saying that the Dalai clique relied heavily on the influence of the Kirti Living Buddha Lobsang Tenzin Jigme Yeshe Gyatso, who fled the country in 1959, to orchestrate self-immolations.

It also sent members of the Tibetan Youth Congress and those trained overseas to incite self-immolation. The Internet and media outlets supporting "Tibetan independence" were also used to hype such incidents.

CCTV named the Voice of America and Radio Free Asia in the documentary, blaming them for constant hyping of such incidents.

According to the documentary, the clique instructs the self-immolators to shout "Free Tibet" or "Let the Dalai Lama return to Tibet," and release political prisoners," and so forth, and asks them to print out the slogans into leaflets to scatter them on the spot so as to increase the impact.

The Dalai Lama has repeatedly blamed "China's wrong policy" for the self-immolations, and called on the international community to pressure China. He also claimed that "there is no religious freedom in Tibetan-inhabited areas," and that Tibetan culture is dying, noting these are the reasons for Tibetans' self-immolations.

Otto Kolbl, a scholar with the University of Lausanne in Switzerland, told CCTV the Tibetan language, culture and religion are extremely strong, and he hasn't seen anything suggesting this culture is about to disappear.

"It's really a problem of informing people of the truth, and again it's a problem of the Western media. It's also certainly a problem of the interests of the exiled Tibetans. It's a fact that the more trouble there is in Tibet, the more money they get," Kolbl said.

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