Nepal. November 1. More than 100 Tibetan exiles were detained Tuesday as they gathered to pray for nine young Tibetans who set themselves on fire to protest Chinese rule. Five of the nine Tibetans died from their injuries. Nepalese police clashed with demonstrators after authorities entered the prayer meeting and removed a banner of the Dalai Lama.
Read more at the Associated Press. [Photos: Prakash Mathema/AFP/Getty Images; Niranjan Shrestha/AP; Narendra Shrestha/EPA]
Few months back China’s Public Security Ministry agreed to provide Nepal a grant of Rs 110 million in the form of police equipment to do its dirty laundry. We have seen pictures again and again where Nepal police personnel in riot gears wielding batons manhandling peaceful protesters, not shying away from inflicting physical injuries, when the protestors are just exercising their rights of freedom of speech. I spent almost 24 years in Nepal, and I have seen our situation deteriorate with the passage of time. The 2008 March uprising in Lhasa followed by protests in other regions in Tibet was an indication that China’s policies in Tibet had never worked despite the claims that were made of economic growth by the Chinese Communist Party. It also increased Beijing’s influence over Nepal which is home to about 20,000 Tibetan refugees and entry point for thousands of refugees who make the treacherous journey across the Himalayas every year. China doles out money to Nepal to take harsh actions against peaceful Tibetan protestors, tighten its borders and forceful deportation of Tibetan refugees. This also coincided with the shift in power in Nepal with the end of monarchy and Maoist joining mainstream politics. China sees in Nepal an ally in critical issues like Tibet and India and recently there have been many Chinese officials paying visit to Nepal promising more financial aid if they continue to do their dirty laundry.