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16april20093Dharamshala: Jophur Monastery in Jodha County of the Chamdho Region in Eastern Tibet was recently closed by Chinese authorities, relayed Tibetan parliament member Geshe Monlam Tharchin from a phone call he received from Tibet. He told The Tibet Post International that several monks were also arrested at the monastery, which is one of the ancient monastery of the Drukpa Kagyu sect of Tibetan Buddhism, for staging a protest against Chinese- imposed patriotic re-education.

Monks at Jophur Monastery's studies typically include the tantra and sutra, but in recent years Chinese authorities have insisted upon the inclusion of patriotic re- education and other non-traditional programs in the curriculum. Many monks including the head of the monastery, Jangchub Trulku, have been arrested, detained and sentenced to jail time by Chinese armed forces for not respecting the new policies. Some monks have started demanding the immediate release of the jailed monks on the grounds that no actual crime or wrongdoing occurred.

The Chinese authorities responded to the monks' claims by sentencing them to jail time as well. Monlam Tharchin reported that the monks are still in the detention center as of March 28th. He also said that Jophur Monastery remains closed and that one of the oldest monks of Jophur, named Petse, was also arrested. No further details are known about the identities of the arrested monks or the length of sentence they received.

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