By Tsering Choephel
DHARAMSALA, 2 Jan: Chinese authorities have sentenced a Tibetan man named Lhakdor to 11 years in prison for allegedly spreading rumours about Tibet’s independence, as reported by Tibet Times. The charges and imprisonment reportedly took place in July 2016. However, due to a lack of access under strict Chinese control and surveillance inside Tibet, the news has only recently surfaced.
In July 2016, while at the airport in Karze preparing to fly to Lhasa, Lhakdor had his mobile phone checked and thoroughly examined by Chinese police. He was accused of collecting audio and video content related to Tibet’s independence and spreading rumours. The report stated that these accusations subsequently led to his detention.
Later, the Palyul People’s Court summoned Lhakdor’s family and informed them that he had been sentenced to 11 years in prison, according to the report.
He has served seven years of his sentence, and as per a source cited in the report, Lhakdor’s family were allowed to meet him only once since his arrest. Information regarding where he is being held in prison and his health remains undisclosed due to the Chinese authorities’ usual practice of arbitrary arrest, sentencing, and persecution of Tibetans. The source described Lhakdor as a patriotic Tibetan involved in various business activities, frequently traveling to Lhasa and other regions.
He hails from a place called Jangsang in Palyul county of Karze Prefecture, previously part of the traditional Tibetan Kham province