Monk sets himself on fire in northwest China

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Associated Press

Posted on March 16, 2014 at 4:32 AM

Updated Sunday, Mar 16 at 4:35 AM

BEIJING (AP) — A monk set himself on fire Sunday in an ethnic Tibetan area of northwest China, the country's official news agency reported.

In a brief report citing local authorities, Xinhua News Agency said the monk was from the Shaderi Monastery in Huangnan Tibetan autonomous prefecture in Qinghai province. The report said police were rushing to the site and gave no further details.

A man at the Zekog county public security bureau confirmed the immolation and said it took place outside the monastery. He said he had no other information and refused to be identified. Calls to the county government rang unanswered.

Qinghai neighbors Tibet. More than 100 people have self-immolated in Tibetan areas since 2009 to protest Chinese restrictions on Buddhism and denigration of the Tibetans' spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, who lives in India.

The government has blamed the self-immolations on hostile foreign forces that want to separate Tibet from China.

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