The Tibetan regional government has posted a notice on its official websites to maintain stability or face dismissal or criminal charges ahead of the Tibetan New Year that Tibet celebrates New Year in coming 22 Feb. It follows a series of deadly protests in Sichuan province in January and the self-immolations of 19 ethnic Tibetans in the past year in apparent protest against Chinese rule. The anniversary of deadly 2008 riots in Lhasa falls shortly afterwards, on 14 March. Citing the government notice, the Tibet Daily newspaper said that officials were warned that they "must put all their efforts into maintaining a stable, unified social situation in our region". They were also urged to "have a clear head and fully recognize the extreme importance and urgency of the job of maintaining stability". Three Tibetans have set fire to themselves in south-west China, reports say, in the latest apparent protest against rule from Beijing. If confirmed, the latest protest would mean 19 Tibetans had self-immolated in the past year and 13 of them had died.
The ethnic Tibetan areas of Sichuan province are said to remain extremely tense. Correspondents say the recent violence in the region is the most serious outbreak of anti-government protest among Tibetans in nearly four years. Since March 2011, at least 19 Tibetans have set themselves on fire in apparent protest against Beijing's rule. The most recent three cases happened on Friday in Seda County in Sichuan province, activists said. Last month, three violent protests were reported in the same province. One protester was killed on 23 January in a confrontation with security forces in Draggo County, known as Luhuo in Chinese.
China also confirmed that a Tibetan was shot dead by security forces in Seda County on 25 January. A man in Aba prefecture was also reportedly shot dead during a protest in the week that followed. Tibetan campaign groups, however, say that the number of Tibetans shot dead is higher than the Chinese government's count. The figures are hard to verify because foreign journalists are not allowed to enter areas of unrest in Sichuan. And Officials have also blamed outside forces, particularly the Dalai Lama, for encouraging these act of defiance.
In such a situation an US-based Radio Free Asia said they had called for the return of Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama during the protest in Sichuan province.