New Arrests

Ngawang Sangpo is a 31-year-old from Medro Gongkar County under Lhasa City. A monk at Drepung Monastery, Ngawang was arrested on 5 September 1996 and sentenced to two years imprisonment for indulging in pro-independence activities.

Namgyal Dhondup from Phulung Sub-county in Pashoe County in Chamdo region was arrested on 22 January 1997.

Dramdul, aged 57 or 58 years, was one of the company heads of the Gangyen Development Corporation. He was arrested on 12 November 1996 for his involvement in the Panchen Lama reincarnation issue.

Another arrest in connection with the Panchen Lama issue was Gompo, also a head of one of the branch offices of Gangyen Development Coporation. He is about 38 years old and more commonly known as Kushok la.

Rinzin Wangchuk, 31 years old, was arrested on 29 August 1996. The reasons for his arrest are unconfirmed.

Sonam Dorji, commonly known as Lugu, was a former monk at Ganden Monastery. His involvement in pro- independence activities resulted in a three year prison term in Sangyip Prison. On 20 May 1991, while in prison, Sonam denounced the seventeen point peace accords and stated that Tibet was a free nation. This resulted in the extension of his prison term for a further one and a half years. He was subsequently transferred to Trisam Prison in Toelung and subjected to harsh labour.

After his release in 1993, Sonam was expelled from his monastery. He worked for some time in “Lhasa Tengyur Studio” until he was again arrested on 14 June 1996. He is presently being held in Gutsa Detention Centre as a suspect of involvement in the bombings that took place last year in Tibet.

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