China Hit by Another Self-Immolation
A person has self-immolated in a remote Tibetan area in northwestern China, state media said Friday, the latest such incident to hit the Asian nation.
In a brief dispatch, the official Xinhua news agency said the incident happened in remote Qinghai province's Huangnan Tibetan autonomous prefecture, but gave no details as to the victim's identity or gender.
The report said authorities are investigating the incident. It is unclear when the self-immolation took place, or whether the person involved was Tibetan.
The government of Jianzha County -- where the incident took place -- refused to comment on the case while calls to local police went unanswered.
Since March last year, at least 37 people have set themselves on fire in Tibetan-inhabited areas of China in protest at repressive government policies, according to activists.
On May 27, two Tibetan men set themselves alight in front of the Jokhang temple, a renowned center for Buddhist pilgrimage in the centre of Lhasa -- the capital of the Tibet region.
It was the first such incident to hit the city. Travel agents in Lhasa said last week Chinese authorities had closed Tibet to foreign visitors.
Tibetans have long chafed under China's rule over the vast Tibetan plateau, saying that Beijing has curbed religious freedoms and their culture is being eroded by an influx of Han Chinese, the country's main ethnic group.
Beijing, however, insists that Tibetans enjoy religious freedom and have benefited from improved living standards brought on by China's economic expansion.