Former Tibetan political prisoner smuggles list of fellow prisoners into exile
DHARAMSALA, Aug 13: A former Tibetan political prisoner who arrived in India recently has smuggled a list of 45 Tibetans who were arrested during and after the 2008 Tibetan Uprising.
“The list is the latest evidence from Tibet of the harsh measures the Chinese imposed in Tibet during and after the 2008 Tibetan Uprising,” said Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy (TCHRD), a rights group based in Dharamsala that received the list from Gonpo Tsering who arrived in India on Aug 2.
TCHRD stated that all the prisoners on the list were arrested between 2008 and 2009 and all were held at Deyang prison, located in Huang Xu Town in Deyang City, Sichuan Province.
According to the rights group, 10 out of 45 are still serving with two Tibetans serving life sentence. Out of the two serving life sentence, Pema Yeshi, a layman from Nyagri County in Kardze Prefecture initially got death sentence with two years’ reprieve but was later commuted to life.
The list further provides evidence that a large number of Tibetans, who were arrested or sentenced during the Chinese government’s crackdown on Tibetans following the 2008 Tibetan Uprising, still remain unknown to the Tibetans in exile and the world at large as TCHRD states that the list includes 18 former and current prisoners who were not listed in TCHRD Political Prisoners Database.
Gonpo Trinley, a 25-yr-old former Tibetan political prisoner compiled the list based on Tibetans he knew while he was held in Deyang prison from 2008-2009.
On 21 June 2008, during the 2008 Tibetan Uprising, Gonpo Trinley and his older cousin Nyida Sangpo distributed leaflets and shouted slogans calling for the “return of the Dalai Lama to Tibet” outside the Kardze county police station. Within minutes they were arrested, beaten and taken to the county detention centre by the People’s Armed Police officers.
After six months of solitary confinement during which they were constantly beaten and interrogated, they were transferred to a prison in Dartsedo County with seven other Tibetan detainees.
Gonpo Trinley spent a year in the Dartsedo Prison. On 16 July 2009, Gonpo Trinley and his brother were sentenced to ‘reform through labour’ (laogai) by a local court. Gonpo Trinley received a sentence of two years and six months, along with deprivation of political rights for two years. His cousin was sentenced to three years. The court sentenced the seven other Tibetans with varying terms of two to six years.
All of them, including Gompo were sent to Deyang prison, located about 2 hours away from Chengdu city, the capital of Sichuan Province.
After enduring various hardships, including making canvas shoes for long hours without adequate food and “political education” sessions at the prison, Gonpo Trinley was finally released on 21 October 2010. Even after his release, he was barred from resuming his studies and rejoining his monastery. Local authorities prohibited him from leaving the hometown without permission.
Eventually, Gonpo Trinley left his hometown and arrived in India through Nepal on Aug 2, 2012.
Gonpo Trinley hails from Village no. 7 in Serkhar Township in Kardze (Ch: Ganzi) County, Kardze Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan Province.
Gonpo’s Trinley’s prison release order, which he shared with TCHRD shows that he was charged of ‘incitement to split the country’.
Following is the list of 45 Tibetans imprisoned in 2008 at Deyang, as provided by Gonpo Trinley to TCHRD:
|Pema Yeshi||2009||Life sentence||Layman||Nyagri County, Kardze||Imprisoned|
|Sonam Gonpo||2009||Life sentence||Layman||Nyagri County, Kardze||Imprisoned|
|Tsewang Gyatso||2008||16 yrs||Layman||Nyagri County||Imprisoned|
|Nyima Drakpa||2008||12 yrs||Layman||Tawu County||Imprisoned|
|Gyurmey Trinley||2008||10 yrs||Monk at Larung Gar, Sertha||Qinghai||Imprisoned|
|Ngodrub Phuntsog||2008||8 yrs||Layman||Sershul Township, Kardze||Imprisoned|
|Palden Tashi||2008||7 yrs||Monk at Kardze Monastery||Kardze County||Imprisoned|
|Lhakpa Tsering||2008||7 yrs||Layman||Kardze County||Imprisoned|
|Lhundrub||2009||7 yrs||Monk||Lithang County||Imprisoned|
|Sonam Tenpa||2009||7 yrs||Layman||Lithang County||Imprisoned|
|Sangpo||2008||6 yrs||Dadothog Monastery||Kardze County||Released|
|Losang Dhonyoe||2008||6 yrs||Gesar Monastery||Derge County||Released|
|Bhuga||2008||6 yrs||Layman||Gonjo County*||Released|
|Losang Dorje||2008||6 yrs||Layman||Drango County||Released|
|Tsewang Drakpa||2008||5 yrs||Larung Gar Buddhist Institute||Sertha County||Released|
|Losang Choegyal||2008||5 yrs||Kardze Monastery||Kardze County||Released|
|Losang Tenpa||2008||5 yrs||Kardze Monastery||Kardze County||Released|
|Soeba||2008||5 yrs||Gesar Monastery||Kardze||Released|
|Jamyang Choephel||2008||5 yrs||Gesar Monastery||Kardze||Released|
|Thubten Gyatso||2008||4 yrs||Larung Gar Buddhist Institute||Dhardo Township, Kardze||Released|
|Losang Geleg||2008||4 yrs||Beri Monastery||Kardze County||Released|
|Yeshi Dorje||2008||4 yrs||Kharnang Monastery||Kardze County||Released|
|Jampa Sonam||2008||4 yrs||Khangmar Monastery||Kardze County||Released|
|Yeshi Dhargye||2008||4 yrs||Khangmar Monastery||Kardze County||Released|
|Kelsang Dorje||2008||4 yrs||Layman||Kardze County||Released|
|Jampa Lhundup||2008||4 yrs||Gesar Monastery||Kardze County||Released|
|Dadul||2009||3 yrs||Layman||Kardze County||Released|
|Mingyur||2008||3 yrs||Larung Gar Buddhist Institute||Sertha County||Released|
|Jampa Lodroe||2008||3 yrs||Beri Monastery||Kardze County||Released|
|Tragya||2008||3 yrs||Monk||Palyul County||Released|
|Tsering Samdrub||2008||3 yrs||Monk||Palyul County||Released|
|Karma Tsetso||2008||3 yrs||Larung Gar Buddhist Institute||Yushu||Released|
|Yeshi||2008||3 yrs||Beri Monastery||Serkhang Township, Kardze County||Released|
|Tashi Gyatso||2008||3 yrs||Gesar Monastery||Kardze County||Released|
|Ugyen Namgyal||2008||3 yrs||Layman||Sertha County||Released|
|Nyida Sangpo||2008||3 yrs||Layman||Kardze County||Released|
|Tsewang Rigzin||2008||3 yrs||Layman||Kardze County||Released|
|Wanglu||2009||3 yrs||Layman||Kardze County||Released|
|Ngawang Sonam||2009||3 yrs||Layman||Kardze County||Released|
|Losang Nemey||2008||2 yrs and 6 months||Layman||Derge County||Released|
|Jigha||2009||2 yrs and 6 months||Layman||Kardze County||Released|
|Tharchog||2008||2 yrs||Layman||Sertha County||Released|
|Konchok Kyab||2008||2 yrs||Monk||Palyul County||Released|
|Lama Kyab||2008||2 yrs||Monk||Palyul County||Released|
|Ugyen Tsewang||2008||2 yrs||Layman||Lithang County||Released|