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11 may 2012 002Dharamsala: Demanding the release of political prisoners, local villagers from Adu near Nagpa County have stopped farming as a result of the ongoing dispute.

On 1 May 2012, an estimated 200 women from Adu villages near Nagpa County set out to meet with Chinese government officials, demanding the release of those recently arrested in local demonstrations. Military forces stopped the Tibetans en-route and heated arguments between the groups ensued. In what quickly grew into a tense situation, the head of Adu Monastery arrived, requesting the villagers withdrawal from talks.

In the aftermath, the local Tibetan community gathered, establishing their purpose was to work for all Tibetans, not just those imprisoned locally. Expressing solidarity with Jamyuang, a self-immolator, they committed not to farm and not to collect Ophiocordyceps sinensis (caterpillar fungus).

Shortly after, on 7 May, seven demonstrators, including those arrested in demonstrations in Nagpa County, were released. The prisoners remained detained for three additional days of ‘re-education.' Chinese authorities promised additional prisoners would be released.

Local Tibetans resumed collecting Ophiocordyceps sinensis (caterpillar fungus) after the concession by Chinese authorities; however they have stood ground on their farming boycott. Consequences from this action could prove severe for the villagers, as a majority of their income comes from agriculture work.

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