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27thaugust2011tokyoTokyo: Tibetans and Japanese observed a prayer gathering in Tokyo today in memory of Tsewang Norbu, a Tibetan monk who committed self-immolation on August 15 in Kham region of Tibet. The prayer gathering coincide the 14th day funeral service of the deceased monk. Tibetan community in Japan supported by Tibet Support group members organized the gathering at Joenji, a Buddhist temple in Shinjuku city of Tokyo.

Tsewang Norbu, a young monk of Nyatsa Monastery openly called for freedom in Tibet and return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to Tibet, and later immolated himself to draw the Government's attention. The Chinese government sent a huge military contingent and cordoned off the monastery, and severed water and electricity connection to the monastery. The situation in the region is said to be very volatile with Beijing taking rigid stance on the dissenters.

Mr. Tsewang Gyalpo Arya, Joint secretary of Liaison Office of His Holiness the Dalai Lama for Japan & East Asia briefed the gathering on the situation in the region, and said that the Chinese government has always oppressed the Tibetans' voice for freedom and justice. The way the government handled the Kirti monastery incident last March when a young monk Phuntsok did self-immolation under similar circumstances, and this Nyatso monastery siege is a testimony to the brutality of Chinese rule in Tibet. This prayer gathering is also a message to the Chinese government that the world is watching their evil deeds, he said.

He appealed the Japanese government and the people to urge the Chinese leadership to take Tibet issue seriously and to resolve it as any responsible government would.

Rev. Kobayashi, Representative of Japanese monks federations spoke on the critical situation in Tibet with the cases of self immolation harshly dealt by the despotic regime. "The fact that the monk Tsewang Norbu choosed 15th August, the independence day of India, is implicit of what is lies deep within him, I request the people here to cogitate deeply on the Tibetan freedom struggle and voice our support to this just cause of Tibet." He said.

Tibetans and Japanese read the prayers of Praise to Tara, Heart Sutra, and recitation of Mani and Guru's mantra. Japanese monks led the prayer of Hangyashingyo, Japanese version of Heat Sutra, and paid respect at the alter where the photo of the deceased is placed.

With the growing Chinese military built up and increased intrusion in the Sea around Japan's Senkaku Island, when Japan is struggling hard to recover from the earthquake and tsunami disaster, Japanese people are wary of Chinese government's intention and integrity.

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