fredag 26. juni 2020

China Orders Prayer Flags Taken Down in Tibet in an Assault on Culture, Faith

The campaign, described as a program of “behavioral reform,” began in June in Qinghai’s Golog (in Chinese, Guoluo) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture and in Tengchen (Dingqing) county in the Chamdo municipality of the Tibet Autonomous Region, a local source told RFA this week. “Government officials and police have summoned the local people to meetings, ordering them to take part in what they called an environmental cleanup drive and movement of behavioral reform,” RFA’s source said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

“Led by the police, local Tibetans are now taking down prayer flags in their villages and on the hilltops,” where they are traditionally hung in the belief that they will ward off evil and bring good luck, the source said.

Whether old or new, the prayer flags bearing mantras are all being removed from their traditional locations, the source said, adding that even the poles on which the flags were hung are being dismantled. “This is an act of contempt and utter disregard for local Tibetans’ customs and faith,” the source said, adding that he fears this new campaign will spread and encourage even more restrictions on traditional customs and religious practice.