Gonpo Kyi and Choekyong Arrested by Chinese Authorities for Advocating Brother’s Retrial: Current Whereabouts Unknown

By Tsering Choephel

Gonpo Kyi and her husband Choekyong during one of their campaigns, calling for the retrial of their brother, Dorjee Tashi.

DHARAMSALA, 14 Dec: The Chinese authorities arrested Gonpo Kyi and her husband Choekyong, detaining the couple on the morning of December 13, with their current situation and location unknown, as reported by freetibet.org

According to the report, the couple visited Lhasa People’s Court with a letter calling for the retrial of Dorjee Tashi’s life sentence—a penalty given without proper trials on trumped-up charges. They also appealed to the authorities to permit them to meet Dorjee Tashi in prison, a request that had been previously accepted. 

However, both Gonpo Kyi and Choekyong were arrested by security personnel and taken to an unspecified police station. The report states that the couple’s whereabouts and conditions are currently unknown. 

Gonpo Kyi has consistently demonstrated against the Chinese authorities on behalf of her incarcerated brother, Dorjee Tashi, who was convicted and given a life sentence in prison under circumstances that she and numerous human rights organisations deem unjust and unfair. 

Earlier, on 1 August, she was also beaten by authorities outside the notorious Drapchi prison in Lhasa after she appealed to the Chinese authorities for a promised meeting, which unfortunately never took place. 

Her brother, Dorjee Tashi, was once a successful hotelier and businessman involved in numerous philanthropic endeavours. Following the 2008 pan-Tibetan uprising in Lhasa, he was arrested and sentenced to life in prison on trumped-up charges, without proper trials. 

Gonpo Kyi and other family members have made multiple attempts to initiate the appeal process for a re-trial with the concerned Chinese authorities, but their efforts have yielded no results. Despite the arrests, beatings, and threats she has received from Chinese authorities, she continues to steadfastly seek justice for her brother.

The sibling duo, Dorjee Tashi and Gonpo, were honored with the 2023 ‘Trulku Tenzin Delek Rinpoche Medal of Courage.’

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