Friday, Dec 26, 2008
Chinese authorities have arrested 59 people in Tibet accused of spreading rumors and inciting sentiment against the state and public safety, state-run media reported.
Xin Yuanming, deputy director of the Lhasa City Public Security Bureau, announced the arrests Tuesday, saying police had uncovered 48 cases of planning and instigating violence against authorities in Tibet, Xinhua news agency reported Thursday.
The Public Security Bureau deployed a group of 108 police officers to “crack down on the spreading of rumors,” Xinhua said.
It was not clear when the arrests took place.
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The special police unit also works to crack down on illegal downloads from the Internet and the dissemination of reactionary songs electronically.
- A d v e r t i s e m e n t
While Tibet is technically autonomous from the central Chinese government, its current government is directed from Beijing. The Dalai Lama, traditionally the spiritual and political leader of the Tibetan Buddhists, lives in exile in India.
China accuses the Dalai Lama of fomenting discord in his homeland — a charge he denies.
Tibetan Buddhists say they resent the slow erosion of their culture amid an influx of Han Chinese, the largest ethnic group in China.
Resentment against the Chinese in Tibet spilled over last March, when Buddhist monks initiated peaceful anti-Chinese protests in the regional capital of Lhasa. The demonstrations began March 14, the anniversary of a failed 1959 uprising against Beijing’s rule that sent the Dalai Lama into exile.