Thursday, June 7, 2012

Sorry We are Now Closed!

Chinese authorities have closed Tibet to visitors following the 2 recent
Self- immolations  In  Lhasa Tibet's capital.
 It is the start of a major festival that traditionally sees tourists
flock to the Himalayan region which has been under tight security
 since March 2008 due to the protests against Chinese barbaric
 treatment of Tibetans.
Many travel agencies said they were told in May that travellers from
 Overseas would not be allowed into Tibet and said they were
clueless about how long the ban would last.
"The tourism bureau asked us to stop organising foreign groups to Tibet
 in late May.
We don't know when they will lift the ban," an employee at the Tibet China
International Tour Service told AFP.
The festival traditionally sees Buddhist pilgrims flock to Tibet

 to mark the month-long celebration of Buddha's birthday, which

began on June 4 this year - a date that coincided with the anniversary
 of the 1989 Tiananmen crackdown on democracy protests.
Another agent from the Tibet China Youth Tour Service said the ban might also be
 linked to the "recent social order problem".

Not the first travel ban

China has on many occasions banned foreign travel to Tibet, where
 many Tibetans complain of cultural and religious repression at the hands 
of Chinese authorities - a claim the government denies.
Since March last year, 37 people have set themselves on fire in Tibetan-inhabited areas
of China in protest at repressive government policies, according to activists.
On May 27, two Tibetan men set themselves alight in front of the Jokhang temple,
 a renowned centre for Buddhist pilgrimage in the centre of Lhasa - 
the first such incident to hit the regional capital.
Foreign tourists were banned from travelling to the region for more
 than a year in 2008 after anti-government riots erupted in Lhasa -
 unrest that subsequently spread to other Tibetan-inhabited areas of China. 

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