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Another 2 Tibetan self-immolations in China

Reports of another 2 Tibetan self-immolations in northwestern China takes to 5 the number of people who have set fire to themselves this week.

Tibetan self immolation labrang 20121024Enlarge
Tibetan Buddhist monks leave a ceremony at the historic Labrang Monastery, which is second only to the Potala Palace in Lhasa in size, in the town of Xiahe, Gansu Province on March 14, 2008. (MARK RALSTON/AFP/Getty Images)

Another two people reportedly died today after setting themselves on fire in a heavily Tibetan area of northwestern China.

International rights groups said two ethnic Tibetans self-immolated in Gannan prefecture in Gansu province, taking to five the number of people who have set fire to themselves in the region since last Saturday.

London-based Free Tibet said 23-year-old Tsewang Kyab set fire to himself in Amuquhu township in Xiahe county in the evening, local time.

His death, and that of Lhamo Tseten, who self-immolated in the same township earlier in the day, were confirmed by International Campaign for Tibet.

Free Tibet director Stephanie Brigden called on the next generation of Chinese leaders, who will be announced next month, to “act on Tibetan demands for freedom.”

“China’s policies in Tibet have failed utterly,” Brigden said in a statement.

Nearly 60 ethnic Tibetans, many of them monks and nuns, have set fire to themselves since February 2009 to protest against Chinese rule in Tibetan-inhabited regions. Beijing has accused the Dalai Lama of instigating the burnings.

The recent spate of burnings in Gannan prefecture prompted local authorities to offer cash rewards for information about people planning to set fire to themselves. 

Police are offering 50,000 yuan, or nearly $8,000, for information on “the sources of scheming, planning and instigating such acts,” Radio Free Asia reported earlier this week, citing the notice that was dated October 21.

Anyone with credible information about the most recent protests will receive about $3,000, the Voice of America reported.

“Self-immolations have seriously affected social harmony and the working order of people’s daily lives,” the notice said.

“The Tibetan people should voluntarily fight against such illegal acts.”

More from GlobalPost: In-depth series: Tibetans in turmoil

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/asia-pacific/china/121026/tibetan-self-immolations-china