China
10.08.00
Urgent Interventions

China: arbitrary arrest of eight Tibetans

Case CHN 100800

The International Secretariat of OMCT requests your URGENT intervention in the following situation in People's Republic of China.

Brief description of the situation

The International Secretariat of OMCT has just been informed by a reliable source of the alleged arbitrary arrest of eight Tibetans by the People's Liberation Army (PLA) in March 2000 for their alleged involvement in political activities in the form of putting up pro-independence wall posters.

According to the information received, five out of the eight detained were monks from the Sog Tsendhen Monastery and the other three were lay people from the county. The following were arrested on the night of 17 March 2000, reportedly beaten and compelled to reveal the names of their 'accomplices': Yeshi Tenzin (32) and Gyurmey (28). On 19 March 2000, three monks, Tenzin Chowang (36), Namgyal Soepa (26) and Khedrup, and three lay people, Diru Dadak (36), Tsering Lhagon (40) and Serpa Sichoe (83) were arrested.

They were reportedly initially taken to Sog County Public Security Bureau Office and later transferred to Lhasa where they were detained in the 'TAR' Intelligence Bureau. Since, they have not been seen, nor have their family members been allowed to visit them.

Sichoe, Soepa and Chowang were previously arrested in 1997 (in connection with a bomb explosion which took place in Sog County in 1995) and reportedly severely ill-treated and then released after several months because of deteriorating health conditions. In light of this, the International Secretariat of OMCT is gravely concerned for the physical and psychological integrity of the above mentioned persons. .

The detention of these eight Tibetans is reported to be linked to the recurring unrest in Sog County since 1993 when Chinese authorities confirmed the outbreak of unrest in Sog County in Nagchu prefecture following a serious campaign to force Chinese poachers and traders to leave the area. A number of military camps have been built in Sog County for the several hundred Chinese PLA forces stationed there. PLA personnel are reportedly also stationed at Sog Tsendhen Monastery and the monks are subjected to restricted freedom of movement, particularly from travelling to Nagchu and Lhasa.

Action requested

Please write to the authorities in the People's Republic of China urging them to:

i. take all necessary measures to guarantee the physical and psychological integrity of the above-mentioned persons and order their immediate release in the absence of valid legal charges or, if such charges exist, bring them before an impartial and competent tribunal and guarantee their procedural rights at all times;
ii. put an end to the practice of illegal and arbitrary arrests and ill-treatment and torture;
iii. guarantee the respect of human rights and the fundamental freedoms throughout the country in accordance with national laws and international human rights standards.

Addresses

Premier of the People's Republic of China, ZHU Rongji Zongli, Guowuyuan, 9 Xihuangchenggenbeijie
Beijingshi 100032, People's Republic of China
Procurator-General of the Supreme People's Procuratorate of the People's Republic of China HAN Zhubin Jianchazhang Zuigao Renmin Jianchayuan 147 Beiheyan Dajie Donganmen, Dongchengqu Beijingshi 100726 People's Republic of China

Geneva, August 10, 2000
Kindly inform us of any action undertaken quoting the code of this appeal in your reply.
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