Tibetan suicides spread to interior areas; one more dead

The recurring suicides in Tibet and its surrounding prefectures calling for return of the Dalai Lama from exile, have spread to the country side as a Tibetan herdsman died after setting himself on fire while another survived with injuries.

The Tibetan herder died and another one was seriously injured when they set fire to themselves in northwest China's Qinghai Province yesterday, Chinese state-run Xinhua news agency quoted officials as saying today.

The two set themselves on fire at around 3:30 pm (local time) in Kardo Township of Trindu County, in Yushu Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, the local authorities said.

The dead Tibetan was identified as Tenzin Khedrup, a 22-year-old native Kardo herder.
This is perhaps the first time a Tibetan herdsman committed self-immolation after the spate of suicides began late last year.

Officials are yet to identify the injured, allegedly a migrant carpenter from Aba Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture in southwest China's Sichuan Province, who was still unconscious, the report said.
This is the seventh self-immolation case that has been reported in Qinghai alone since the beginning of this year.

Five of the total eight persons who committed suicide died.So far around 40 Tibetans have committed self-immolation in different Tibetan areas but mostly in Sichuan province.

Overseas Tibetan groups say that the suicides calling for return of the Dalai Lama from exile reflects growing disenchantment and restiveness among the Tibetan population, despite attempts by the Chinese government to develop the remote Himalayan region by committing huge funds.

The Chinese government which has stepped up security in all Tibetan areas alleges that the suicides are an orchestrated attempt by overseas Tibetan groups to stir up trouble in Tibet and its neighbouring prefectures.

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