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China calls Dalai Lama 'hatchet man'; blames him for suicides

March 07, 2012 14:13 IST

China on Wednesday launched a blistering attack on the Dalai Lama, terming him the "hatchet man of anti-China forces" and calling the recent spate of suicides by Tibetan monks and nuns as an orchestrated attempt to create chaos.

State-run Xinhua news agency quoted an official as saying that police investigations of the self-immolations in Tibetan areas of the provinces of Sichuan and Qinghai, bordering Tibet, have found that victims were used by separatists to create chaos.

Wu Zegang, chief of the Aba prefecture of southwest China's Sichuan province said similarities found in the self-immolations in the Tibetan-populated regions have pointed to an "orchestrated campaign" launched with political motive.

As many as 25 Tibetans, mostly Buddhist monks and nuns have committed self immolations so far, in what is being seen as a sign of growing unrest among Tibetans. However, China has sought to dismiss suggestions of instability.

"The Dalai Lama clique's separatist activities are doomed to fail as the self-immolations in a small number of monasteries cannot disrupt the stable development in Tibetan- populated regions," a top ruling Communist Party official from Sichuan said.

"The Dalai Lama was the hatchet man of anti-China forces" in the world, the ringleader of the conspiracy of 'Free Tibet', the ultimate agitator of the chaos of Tibet and Tibetan Buddhism and the utmost impediment to the normal development of Tibetan Buddhism," Li Changping, a member of the standing committee of the Sichuan Committee of the Party said.

The fresh broadside against the Tibetan spiritual leader came as three more immolations were reported from Tibet. Unlike the previous 22 attempts of self immolations, which were carried out by monks and nuns, the three who committed suicides now were civilians, including a mother of four.

While a teenager committed suicide in Aba prefecture in Sichuan province on Monday, a woman set herself ablaze in Aba.            

On Tuesday night, Xinhua reported that Tsering Kyi, 20, a student of Class 12 Grade Three of the junior middle school of Maqu County Tibetan Middle Schoo in China's Gansu province set herself on fire last Saturday.

She set herself on fire at a vegetable market after buying gasoline from nearby stores.

While the news agency said she was confirmed to have sustained a head injury prior to setting herself on fire, the doctors said she was burnt to death. The new cases of suicides took place as Chinese legislature the National People's Congress began its annual session.

The session is significant this year as the top leadership of the CPC and the government, including President Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao are set to retire later this year.

Li, whose Sichuan prefecture, neighbouring Tibet, has witnessed most of the suicides by monks said: "Our fight with the Dalai Lama clique is not on the ethical or religious fronts but a serious political struggle".

"The clique have made more attempts to split China, a few monks and nuns in the Tibetan-populated regions echoed them at a distance. But these people can neither represent all Tibetans nor stop the stably-developing trend in these regions," he said at a panel discussion of the Sichuan Delegation open to press during the ongoing legislative meeting.

"The hearts of Tibetan people are always favouring Beijing and the Communist Party of China. The separatist activities of Dalai Lama clique are doomed to fail," he claimed.
K J M Varma in Beijing
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