Over 40 Tibetans were arrested on Saturday from Margao town of Goa for protesting against Chinese President Xi Jinping as he arrived in the coastal state for the BRICS summit. The protesters, demanding independence for Tibet, were rounded up from a site 15km away from the BRICS summit venue.
“A total of 43 Tibetans were arrested in the town where they were protesting. They will be produced before a local court later in the day,” Margao Police Inspector C L Patil told PTI. The protest was held under the banner of Tibet Youth Congress. The stir began just before Xi arrived at INS Hansa base this afternoon for the two-day summit that started on Saturday.
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“We want India to help Tibet get freedom. We want our country to be free. We are against the illegal occupation of Tibet by China,” TYC leader Tenzing Jimmy told reporters at the protest site. The protesters, including women, were waiving placards with slogans demanding China unconditionally start talks with Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama’s envoy.
Goa Police started a crackdown on Tibetans a week before the Summit, being attended by leaders of five emerging economies, including India and China. In the last few days, more than 20 of them were detained and left with a warning. But the protest at Margao caught the police unawares.