The Tibetan government-in-exile, led by the Dalai Lama, has released a video that appears to show Tibetan monks being tortured by Chinese security forces.
Video footage from Tibet is extremely rare. The film, which shows violent scenes from the March 2008 riots, is the clearest evidence yet that Tibetans were subject to police brutality as China struggled for control in Lhasa.
In the seven-minute film, exerpts of which are shown above, Chinese police kick and beat apparently defenceless Tibetan protesters and monks after they have been handcuffed and are lying on the ground.
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The Tibetan government-in-exile, which is based in Dharamsala in India, said the treatment of the captives violated international norms and amounted to torture.
Until now, the only video evidence of the riots in March was shot from long-distance and showed clashes in the streets of Lhasa but not evidence of torture.
“This is the first footage which visibly proves the use of brutal and excessive force against Tibetan protesters. It clearly challenges official Chinese statements that disproportionate force was not used on unarmed protesters,” said Stephanie Brigden, the director of the international campaign group Free Tibet.