Tibetan Monks Set Selves On Fire

Lobsang Kalsang and Lobsang Konchok, Tibetan monks both aged 19, set themselves on fire, protesting over Chinese government decision to select the next Dalai Lama, which is against Buddhist traditions. The two monks self-immolated at the Kirti Monastery in Sichuan province’s Aba prefecture, calling for religious freedom, but police managed to rescue them, according to China’s officials. Both were taken to a hospital with minor injuries and their health condition is stable, the sources said.

Tibet Monks Fire

On March 16, Lobsang Kelsang’s brother, the 21-year-old Rigzin Phuntsog, set himself on fire and passed away, in a protest against China’s policy of tight control over Tibetan Buddhism. Tibetan monks and Chinese security forces clashed after his death half year ago.

Beijing insists it has the right to choose who the next Dalai Lama will be, while monks claim their Buddhist leader have the right to select his successor. Monks loyal to Dalai Lama often organize protests against China’s treatment of their religious rights after Dalai Lama was exiled following an unsuccessful uprising in Himalayas in 1959.

Reincarnated Dalai Lama should be born in China-controlled Tibet, Beijing insists, while the Dalai Lama says his successor can be born in exile. He went on to make even more shocking statement, hinting he might choose his successor while still alive or selecting a woman for Dalai Lama.


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