Tibetans urged not to celebrate new year to honour those who self-immolated
NEW DELHI (AFP) - The Tibetan prime minister in exile called Friday for traditional new year celebrations to be shelved as a mark of respect to the nearly 100 people who have self-immolated in the last three years.
A total of 99 Tibetans have set themselves alight to protest Chinese rule in Tibet since 2009, according to the latest tally from the Tibetan government in exile in India.
"Given this continuing tragic situation, I request my fellow Tibetans to not celebrate Losar (the Tibetan New Year on Feb 11) with our usual festivities," said a statement from Lobsang Sangay.
"I ask you to perform only the customary religious rituals like visiting temples and making offerings," it added, while urging Tibetans to wear their traditional robes "to display our identity and tradition".