Former political prisoner Tashi Phuntsok, 60, has actually passed away in Lithang (in Chinese, Litang) county, a Tibetan area in Sichuan province, where the monk had actually staged demonstrations versus logging by China and suffered poundings in prison, an exile source informed RFA.
“He was severely beaten while in prison and he became chronically ill after release from jail. He passed away on March 17th in Lithang county,” stated Geshi Tsering Dorjee from Drepung Gongpa Abbey in southern India.
The International Campaign for Tibet (ICT) stated 3 of his close assistants now residing in exile had actually verified his death, providing the date as March 16.
“The aides were not able to give details about Tashi Phuntsok’s death except that he passed away while being taken to the hospital for treatment,” the ICT stated in a declaration.
Dorjee stated the jail sentence that caused Phuntsok’s disease originated from his arrest on April 17, 2002 for declared participation with kept in mind social activist Tenzin Delek Rinpoche in a series of bomb surges in the city of Chengdu.
“Initially, Tashi Phuntsok was arrested, sentenced to seven years, and jailed at Yakra Phuk prison in Dartsedo (Kangding),” he stated.
“But after one year he was returned to his family in very poor health due to torture he sustained while in prison. He was in a near death situation when he returned.”
The ICT report stated he emerged from jail so emaciated he looked like “skin over skeleton.”
Tashi Phuntso likewise led a demonstration by Tibetans in 1993 to stop logging by Chinese in Nyachu (Yajiang) county,’ added Dorjee.
“At that time the county police attempted to arrest him, but due to overwhelming public outcry in his support, he was let go,” he stated.
Reported by Lobsang Gelek for RFA’s Tibetan Service. Equated by Dorjee Damdul. Composed in English by Paul Eckert.