Chinese authorties sentenced an 81-year-old Tibetan traditional printer for seven years in prison. Norbu, whose Chinese name is Panjue Ruobu, was taken by the police from his home in Lhasa on October 31, 2008, on suspicion that he had printed “prohibited material,” including the banned Tibetan flag, the Human Rights Watch said in a release on Friday.
During his detention, judicial authorities refused to inform his relatives that he was being detained, or to reveal the charges against him. He was tried in secret in November and sentenced to seven years in prison and his current whereabouts are unknown. Human Rights Watch, the US-based advocacy group on human rights, has called on the international community to protest the imprisonment and secret sentencing of this old man, and seek his immediate exoneration and unconditional release.
In November, the Chinese authorities in Tibet sentenced more than 50 Tibetans in prison for various length of times. Since March of this year, the Chinese authorities have detained more than 6,500 Tibetans, Mr. Jamphel Monlam says.