Three new Gutsa prisoners

A recent arrival from Tibet has reported the cases of three new prisoners currently detained without charge in Gutsa, the Detention Centre for the prefecture of Lhasa, located about five km from the city.

Phuntsok Wangdu, a 30-year-old Ganden monk from Medro Gongkar, Gyama County, was expelled from Ganden Monastery in 1989 and came to India. After a short stay in India he returned to Tibet in 1994 where he was actively engaged in political activities including the preparation of prisoners lists for prisons in Lhasa and in Powo Tramo, 500 km east of Lhasa. PLA officials searched for Phuntsok in Lhasa and at his house but at the time he was staying with friends. Later he was arrested in Lhasa and after that his whereabouts remained unknown for about seven months.

Sonam Dorjee is a 29 year old Ganden Monk from Medro Gongkar who was first arrested in 1990 for taking part in a demonstration in Lhasa’s Barkhor area with a group of 15 monks. They were sentenced to 4 to 5 months in Gutsa Prison and than released. Sonam Dorjee was again arrested in June 1996 for allegedly carrying explosives and some secret documents.

A nun from Michungri nunnery was first arrested in August 1991 for demonstrating in Barkhor. She was imprisoned in Gutsa for nine months and then Toelung for a year and three months. She was arrested again in December 1996 because she had made and posted a poster about the reincarnation of the Panchen Lama and Chinese-imposed taxation. It was also said that she carried a Tibetan national flag and some secret documents. Upon arrest she was handcuffed and manacled for about a month and kept in solitary confinement.

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