A Tibetan protester serving a 21-year prison term for sharing news of Tibetan protests with foreign news media died this month in a hospital in Lhasa after being transferred from his prison in critical condition, Tibetan sources and rights groups say.
Kunchok Jinpa, aged 51 and a resident of Driru (in Chinese, Biru) county in Tibet’s Nagchu (Naqu) municipality, had vanished in custody after being detained on Nov. 8, 2013, and died on Feb. 6, three months after being admitted to hospital suffering from paralysis and a brain hemorrhage, according to local sources. Jinpa had gone to live and study in exile in India in 1989 and returned to Tibet in 1998 to work as a tour guide, and was widely respected in his community, sources told RFA’s Tibetan Service.
“Following Kunchok Jinpa’s return to Driru from India, he made a huge impact on Tibetans living inside Tibet by providing guidance and advice on the need for unity and education to preserve Tibetan identity,” Yarthar—a former Driru resident now living in India—said. “People adored and trusted him immensely.”