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Monday, October 16, 2006

Shooting of Tibetan pilgrims

Chinese Forces Shoot and Kill Escaping Tibetans: Take Action Now!

UPDATE: A film crew recorded the entire shooting and their video is now available online

A Romanian film crew at Nangpa Pass recorded the shooting on film. View the video at

Shocking eyewitness reports from Tibet have confirmed that Chinese forces opened fire on a group of Tibetans escaping into Nepal, killing a young nun and a small child. Five others are reported to have been killed when the border patrol opened fire on the over 70 Tibetans who were crossing the Nangpa Pass between Tibet and Nepal. Although 43 Tibetans are reported to have safely made it to Nepal, the whereabouts of the more than 30 remaining members of the group are unknown and it is feared they may have been apprehended by the Chinese authorities.

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More information including news stories and blog posts covering the incident are available on the SFT blog.

Tibetans and mountaineers describe shooting at Nangpa Pass

October 15th, 2006 | Posted by kate

Radio Free Asia posted statements today from Tibetans and climbers who witnessed the deadly shooting at Nangpa Pass. The eyewitness accounts add to the mounting evidence that completely contradict the Chinese government’s outrageous claims.

Here’s an excerpt from one interview:

“There was no one who fought with the Chinese soldiers. I saw everything and in fact I am only Tibetan who saw everything. I threw my bag on the side of road and entered in the camp of the Western climbers,” said one man, who said he had hidden in a toilet at a mountain-climbing camp.

“I concealed my other stuff behind the tent and put on a cap and stood in the midst of the Western climbers. I saw Chinese [troops] shooting at the Tibetans. All were running as fast as they could in the snow and no body tried to fight back.”

Those interviewed at the Tibetan Reception Centre in Kathmandu also describe the emotional shock and trauma of the fleeing Tibetans. Clearly, these were not people capable of confronting armed Chinese guards. Rather they were ambushed in a manner that is incomprehensible, deplorable and once again indicative of the Chinese government’s complete disregard for Tibetan lives.

“It was so tense and confusing that I just thought of staying alive and escaping. I couldn’t think of anything else or help the others.”

“I think the Chinese fired for about 15 minutes. I felt bullets whizzing past my ears. In fact I felt about five bullets pass by me and luckily they missed me. I was so frightened that I crawled in the snow using my hands and feet. The snow was about knee-deep,” he said.

Judging from this irrefutable evidence of Chinese abuse of escapees, we have both the need and the opportunity to truly shame the Chinese government in front of the whole world.


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