Wednesday, January 28, 2009

ICT Report

Some reports stated that local authorities had ordered that Tibetan New Year celebrations should be brought forward by one month to coincide with Chinese New Year.
A blog by one Tibetan on a Tibetan website reported that the county government had told Kirti monastery in Ngaba (Chinese: Aba) in Sichuan province to change the dates of new year and winter religious ceremonies to coincide with the Chinese NewYear.
This year, the two new years are a month apart , although in some parts of the Tibetan area of Amdo, the New Year has been celebrated according to the Chinese calendar. Security was stepped upon the streets near Kirti, where at least 10 Tibetans were shot dead during a protest last March.
One source told ICT: "Local people [inNgaba] are not celebrating [the New Year]. Tibetan women are in the streets, with solemn faces, showing sadness rather than happiness, and to symbolize the non-celebratory mood they carry around dry bread and eat that."

An anonymous Tibetan blogger posted the following comment on a Chinese-language, Tibetan-run website on January 25:
"The 2009 Losar was always going to be unusual because so many people have been killed. In our family, our father can never come back, our mother has visibly aged, uncles and brothers have been detained - some of whom we still don't whether they're dead or alive. Last night, the eldest brother in the neighbor's family was taken away. There's a guy from a village nearby who used to roam all over the place doing business who was locked up for a few months and recently released. But his body is so fragile now that he has to stay in bed with his wife and children looking after him. When you go out, although the police on the streetsaren't as evident as they were a few months ago, there are still a lot. There are armed PAP [People's Armed Police] guys on the roofs'maintaining social stability'. Leaders on television are going roundpaying their respects and urging people to have a good year... I myself will not be celebrating the new year because those who died were my compatriots, and I knew several of those who died - they were shot dead. I haven't dared call home since March of last year because I don't want to cause them any trouble. And so I don't know how they are. I've had no information on them, and just hope they're okay."

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