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Fellow Writers Say Tibetan Sentenced to 7.5 Years for Criticizing Beijing


Jo Jamyang, a Tibetan writer popularly known as "Lomig," is shown in police custody, Sichuan Province, China, undated.

Jo Jamyang, a Tibetan writer popularly known as "Lomig," is shown in police custody, Sichuan Province, China, undated.

A 28-year-old Tibetan writer popularly known as Lomig has been sentenced to seven and half years in prison in a Sichuan province court.

Dharamsala-based Kirti Monastery, which first released the news of the sentencing Monday, said it remains unclear what charges the writer faced. But the Tibet Times reported he was accused disclosing state secrets and "separating the nation."

Free Tibet, a London-based NGO that advocates universal human rights and self-determination for Tibetans in Tibet, reported last year fellow writers suspected the arrest was linked to various blog posts that criticized Beijing’s policies on Tibet.

Lomig, who is also known as Jo Jamyang, was arrested in April 2015 by Chinese police in Ngawa, where he had previously studied at a Buddhist monastery until Chinese authorities closed it down.

Researchers at Free Tibet say he became an “influential figure among young Tibetans in his area," writing about underlying causes of the 2008 Tibetan uprisings and 2009 self-immolation, culminating in a 2010 book, Surge of Yellow Mist.

China has been cracking down on Tibetan writers in recent years, resulting in multiple arrests of some writers. In February, well-known writer Hogan was sentenced to three years in prison; that same month, fellow writer Sonant Tempe was arrested in the Tibetan Autonomous Region for the third time since 2009. His whereabouts remains unknown.

This report was produced in collaboration with VOA's Tibetan Service.

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