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24-Year-Old Tibetan Self-Immolates in Ngaba


Local Tibetans gathered to pray for Kalsang Kyab after he self-immolated Tuesday.

Local Tibetans gathered to pray for Kalsang Kyab after he self-immolated Tuesday.


Kalsang Kyab, aged 24, burned himself to death Tuesday around 6:30 pm in Kangtsa township government building in Dzoge county, Sichuan province. Sources say local Tibetans took his body to Dowa Mege village where monks gathered to pray for the deceased.

Citing witnesses, Kanyag Tsering, spokesperson for the Dharmsala-based Kirti Monastery, said Kalsang Kyab poured kerosene as he walked towards the government building and shouted slogans calling for long life of the Dalai Lama and Kirti Rinpoche.

Kalsang Kyab is from a nomadic family with five other siblings. He is known to be a good natured and a quiet person. The London–based Free Tibet reports that the “terrified Tibetans in Ngaba Prefecture are going into hiding” as military personnel arrive in Kangsa Township after the self-immolation protest today.

Yesterday, three tibetans set themselves on fire. Today's protest is the 86th self-immolation by Tibetans since February 2009. In November, 24 Tibetans have self-immolated themselves to protest Chinese policies.

Beijing has accused the Dalai Lama of inciting the self-immolations to promote Tibetan separatism, a charge he denies. The Tibetan spiritual leader in an interview with Indian national television channel Doordarshan on Saturday said that he is saddened by the increasing number of self-immolation news from Tibet.

He said, “What’s happening is very sad; it brings tears to my eyes…People are not doing this because they are drunk or have family problems, but because they live in constant fear."
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