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China continues banning religious festivities

2022 Mar 10, 10:28, China
Source: ANI

China has banned all key religious activities in and around Tibet's capital Lhasa during celebrations marking the Tibetan New Year according to media reports.

During the Tibetan New Year celebrations, the minority community faced widespread obstruction and interference.

The HK Post reported that this sort of intimidation, alongside restrictions on festivities, is part of a broader strategy by the Chinese Communist Party to undermine Tibetan identity.

Authorities in Tibetan areas have restricted travel and public gatherings with punishments threatened for those violating the bans, the HK Post reported citing Tibetan sources.

The report added that Tibetans working in government jobs were required to report to work during the New Year so that they could not go back to their hometowns to celebrate.

"I wanted to celebrate Losar openly," one Lhasa resident told Radio Free Asia (RFA). "But then due to harassment and restrictions put in place by the Chinese authorities, I don't feel like celebrating at all." It's a pity, a person can't even peacefully pray as per his will even on an auspicious day.

Last month, Lhasa's Ethnic and Religious Affairs Bureau had announced a ban on the celebrations of Losar, citing COVID-19 concerns.

However, according to RFA, the Tibet Autonomous Region has been free from the COVID, and Chinese media has highlighted the record numbers of visitors to the region in several recent reports.

The report further added the order especially applied to different monasteries in and around Lhasa.

"The notice bars Tibetans from performing all the major religious activities that are usually observed ahead of and during the New Year," Ngawang Woebar, a former political prisoner now living in Dharamsala, India, said.

Experts have raised concerns over the continued violation of human rights inside Tibet. They have highlighted the need for world democracies to join hands towards the cause of Tibet.

Criticizing the exploitative nature of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), the experts asked the Western media to drop its indifferent attitude towards China's acts in Tibet.


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