In the first self-immolation protest to take place this year in Tibet or Tibetan regions, a 27 year old man named Phagmo Samdrub set fire to himself on Wednesday at 9:30 pm local time.
Mr. Samdrup carried out his protest near a school in the township of Dokarmo in Tsekhog county, situated in today’s Malho Tibetan Prefecture, Qinghai Province. The area is traditionally known as Amdo Rebkong by Tibetans across Tibet.
A source wishing to remain anonymous for fear of retribution told VOA that local authorities arrived at the scene within a short period of time and took away Mr. Samdrup's body. His current whereabouts and condition remain unclear, and the area is reported to be seeing a dramatic increase in armed troop presence.
This brings the total number of known self-immolations on the Tibetan plateau since March 2009 to 126.
While it is unclear whether Mr. Samdrup left any written statements or voiced any demands before his act, many past self-immolators have called for the return of the Dalai Lama to Tibet and for freedom from oppression.
The United States government has called on China to end the repressive policies and actions that have exacerbated the situation in Tibet and urged China to talk with the Dalai Lama’s representatives to find a solution to the problems in Tibet.
Phagmo Samdrup is survived by his young wife and two children.