Tibet: China Arrests Tibetan Writer Over Critical Comments
A leading Tibetan writer who worked for a Chinese state publishing house has been taken into custody after criticising the government’s response to this month’s deadly earthquake.
Tagyal, who goes by the pen name Zhogs Dung, was arrested at his workplace in the northwestern city of Xining on Friday last week, numerous websites devoted to Tibetan culture said.
Police removed computers from his home the following day and showed the arrest warrant to his wife, they said.
According to the High Peaks Pure Earth website, Zhogs Dung was arrested after signing an open letter with a group of Tibetan intellectuals that called for donations for victims of the April 14 Yushu quake.
Over 2,200 people were killed, 12,000 injured and tens of thousands of homes flattened in the 6.9-magnitude earthquake in a remote Tibetan-populated region high in the Qinghai-Tibet plateau.
In the open letter, the authors condemned some aspects of the Chinese government’s rescue and relief effort and criticised restrictions on individual efforts to help quake victims.
Police in Xining refused to comment on Zhogs Dung’s disappearance, saying they were unaware of the case.
Zhogs Dung, believed to be about 45, gained renown as one of Tibet’s leading intellectuals and essayists, but has long been seen as associated with China’s ruling Communist Party.
Meanwhile, an ethnic Mongolian activist has vanished after Chinese authorities prevented him from attending a United Nations forum on indigenous peoples in New York earlier this month, according to a rights group.
The US-based Southern Mongolian Human Rights Information Centre said that Sodmongol was arrested at Beijing’s airport on April 18, and that his whereabouts remain unknown.
He had been invited to attend a session of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues at UN headquarters in New York.