Two Top Chinese Officials in Tibet Removed From Office

A Chinese news agency says two top officials in Tibet have been dismissed six months after violent riots swept the capital Lhasa.

The semi-official China News Service reported Saturday that deputy governor Qin Yizhi and police chief Wang Binyi were removed by the Tibet People's Congress Friday, the regional rubber-stamp parliament.

Qin Yizhi was stripped of his position as deputy governor of the region but kept his job as Communist party chief of the Capital Lhasa.

The news agency gave no reason for the changes. It said Wang's and Qin's jobs would be taken over by one official, identified as Li Zhao.

Lhasa was hit by violent riots against Chinese rule in March. The protests spread to neighboring Tibetan-inhabited areas of China.

China has accused Tibet's spiritual leader in exile, the Dalai Lama, of instigating the unrest and of seeking to make Tibet independent. But the Buddhist leader says he only wants autonomy and religious freedom for the region.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.