Dharamshala — The Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile expressed solidarity with Wangchuk Tseten, another Tibetan man who set himself on fire in protest against the Chinese government on 15 April 2017 and "called on China to address the genuine grievances of the Tibetan people."
"Wangchuk Tseten from Asey Gyechak nomadic region in Ngagrong County, Kardze (incorporated into China's Sichuan province) has set himself on fire on 15 April 2017. However, his physical condition is unverified as his body was taken by Chinese police to an undisclosed location," the Tibetan Parliament said in a press statement issued on April 18, 2017.
"At least 147 Tibetans have set themselves on fire since 2009 expressing their rejection of the Chinese government's repressive policies in Tibet and calling for the return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to Tibet. The self-immolaters have also called for protection of Tibet's fragile environment as well as safeguarding Tibetan religion and language," it added.
"The fact that more than a hundred Tibetans have burned themselves in protest is unprecedented in history. Yet the Chinese government has intensified its repressive policies on Tibet and labelled Tibetans as 'splittists' instead of addressing the genuine grievances of the Tibetan people," the statement said.
"It is clear that China doesn't treat Tibetans as equal citizens of the Chinese nation. Therefore, we call on the Chinese government to reform their failed policies in Tibet and work towards fulfilling the aspirations of the Tibetan people," it added.
The latest political protest brought the total verified number of self-immolations in Tibet to 147 since February, 2009 and and of them more than 115 were reportedly passed-away due to their severe injuries.
Chinese government says Tibet has always been part of its territory, but Tibetans say Tibet was an independent nation for centuries until Chinese troops invaded, starting in 1940s.
Tibet was invaded by Communist China in 1949. Since that time, over 1.2 million out of 6 million Tibetans have been killed, over 6000 monasteries have been destroyed and acts of murder, rape, arbitrary imprisonment, torture and cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment were inflicted on the Tibetans inside Tibet. Beijing continues to call this a "peaceful liberation".