Tibetans remain under siege in their own homeland today. The Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) has held a prayer service for Tibetans who are suffering repression in Tibet, reports the CTA on Dec. 27, 2013. In Dharamshala, India thousands of Tibetans gathered together to offer prayers and solidarity with Tibetans who have self-immolated in protest against China’s repressive rule in Tibet, and those who are now suffering
Kirti Rinpoche, the head of Kirti Monastery, organized the prayer service. Prayers were offered in memory of Tsultrim Gyatso, a 43-year-old monk of the Achok Monastery in Labrang Tashikhyil, who died after he set himself on fire in Sangchu county in Kanlho prefecture in northeastern Tibet on Dec. 19.
In a note which he wrote just prior to his death, Gyatso wrote, “Tibetans are driven to suffering and the treasures of Tibet are being looted under the repressive law of China." He went on to write that he was setting himself on fire with prayers for the return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to Tibet along with the release of Panchen Lama from prison and the well-being of the six million Tibetans.
At the prayer service Tibetan political leader Dr Lobsang Sangay said: “124 Tibetans have self-immolated in Tibet since 2009. 124 is neither simply a number nor a list of names. They are human beings just like any one of us who will wish to live a complete life, if given a choice.” Sangay wants China to change its current hardline Tibet policy by respecting the aspirations of the Tibetans. Meanwhile, the CTA has repeatedly appealed to Tibetans to please not resort to drastic forms of protests, such as self-immolation. However, the repression and self-immolations in Tibet continue.