BEIJING, March 25, 2008 -- The recent Dalai-back riots in Tibet Autonomous Region, Sichuan and Gansu Provinces have hit the headlines across the world. Some questions and answers about the cause:
Q: When did the riot erupt in Lhasa?
A: On March 10, more than 300 monks from the Zhaibung Monastery ventured into downtown Lhasa. The monks were invective and aggressive, and confronted with the security forces.
In the Sera Monastery, ten monks held up flags of the so-called Tibetan exile government and shouted "Tibetan independence".
In the ensuing days, a few monks chanted independence slogans and challenged officers who were maintaining order.
Affrays turned violent on March 14, resulted in the death of 18civilians and one police officer with 623 injuries. Damage is estimated at more than 244 million yuan (about 34 million U.S. dollars).
Q: When and where did the riot occur in Gansu?
A: On March 14, some monks marched in the street of Xiahe County, Gannan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture.
Violence erupted in Xiahe County and Hezuo City on March 15. It then spread to the counties of Maqu, Luqu and Jone, all in Gannan.
There has been no new unrest since March 20.
Q: When did the riot in Aba County, Sichuan Province, erupt and quiet down?
A: Riots in the Aba county, Sichuan Province, erupted on March 16.Violent mobs, some shouting "Tibet independence" slogans and holding flags of the so-called "Tibetan government-in-exile", stormed into and attacked government offices, police stations, hospitals, schools and banks.
Aba residents started to return to normal life on March 23 and most schools resumed classes on March 24.
However, one policeman was killed and several others were injured in a latest assault in the Garze Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Sichuan Province on March 24.
Q: Are the riots in Tibetan-inhabited areas linked with the Lhasa unrest?
A: Yes. Rioters in Gansu and Sichuan, like their counterparts in Lhasa, shouted slogans of "Tibet Independence", waved the flag of "Tibetan-government-in-exile" and stormed into government offices, police stations, hospitals, schools, shops and markets.
Pamphlets containing "Tibetan independence" contents were in already circulation in the Gannan area on March 10, the same day a "March to Tibet" was organized from across the border in India, and exactly the same day when 300 aggressive monks from the Drepung Monastery paraded into downtown Lhasa.
Some of the mobsters involved in the Gannan violence were visiting monks who were staying at a local lamasery.