Tibetan self-immolator battling for life, may lose both legs

A Tibetan father of one who self-immolated in protest against the Chinese government early this month is being treated in a hospital in Lanzhou city, capital of Gansu Province, according to reliable information received by TCHRD.

Sungdue Kyap, 29, set himself on fire at around 3 pm (local time) on 2 December on highway no. 213 near Bora Monastery in Sangchu (Ch: Xiahe) County in Kanlho (Ch: Gannan) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Gansu Province.

A source with contacts in the region told TCHRD that Sungdue Kyap was first taken to a government hospital in Kanlho Prefecture where the doctors found it difficult to treat him. He was then referred to a bigger hospital in the provincial capital of Lanzhou.

At the government hospital in Lanzhou, Sungdue Kyap’s parents were called in to give their approval to amputation of both his legs. The doctors told Kyap’s family that amputation of both the legs was necessary to save his life, the source told TCHRD citing sources in the area.

According to the source, Sungdue Kyapís parents were not allowed to go inside the room where he was being treated. “They saw him through a glass window but they were not allowed to speak with him or be near him.”

Restrictions and surveillance in Bora area have intensified since 20 October this year when Lhamo Kyap, a father of two, died of protest self-immolation near Bora Monastery.

New information indicates efforts by local authorities to sow seeds of discord and division among local Tibetans in Bora Township. According to the source, many government cadres and workers hailing from Bora Township but working in other areas such as Labrang (Ch: Xiahe), Tsoe (Ch: Hezuo) and Amchok (Ch: Amuqu) counties are being transferred to Bora to carry out measures to combat self-immolation incidents and other protests.

In an ongoing crackdown on the besieged Bora Monastery, these cadres and workers are being assigned the responsibility of providing proper ‘guidance’ and monitoring the activities of some monks who are under government surveillance. The identities of the group of monks from Bora Monastery are unknown at the moment. But the source says, “The cadres and workers are given the responsibility of reining in the blacklisted monks; each monk from the list is under the direct surveillance of a government cadre.”

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