Tibetans protest in Delhi, hold China responsible for self-immolations

Indian policemen detain a Tibetan activist near the Taj Palace Hotel

Indian policemen detain a Tibetan activist near the Taj Palace Hotel, venue of the meeting between Prime Minister of the People’s Republic of China, Li Keqiang and Indian External Affairs minister, Salman Khurshid in New Delhi on 20 May 2013. Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said Monday he had agreed with his Chinese counterpart to make a new push to settle a long-running border row, pledging his commitment to 'peace and tranquillity'. AFP/Getty Images/Manan Vatsyayana


NEW DELHI, India, 20 May 2013

Tibetan organisations are staging protests in different parts of Delhi against the three-day state visit to India of Chinese Premier Li Keqiang.

Shouting slogans against the visiting Chinese dignitary, the Tibetans said they held Keqiang responsible for the spate of self immolations in their homeland.

“Li Keqiang is responsible for the killings in Tibet. 117 self-immolations have happened and he is responsible for all the things,” said a female protester.

More than 100 Tibetans have set themselves on fire to protest against Chinese rule since 2009 across a large swathe of ethnically Tibetan regions, with most of them dying from their injuries.

The Delhi Police has already stepped up security with several routes, including ones near the Chinese embassy, shut.

Four metro stations, including the Race Course station near the Prime Minister’s house, will also be closed for a few hours today.

A large number of personnel have been deployed at the Chinese Embassy and the hotel where the Chinese Premier Li is staying.

Meanwhile, Premier Keqiang, who is on a three-day state visit to India, said that global prosperity would not be possible without the simultaneous development of China and India.

Keqiang, who received a ceremonial reception at the Rashtrapati Bhawan here this morning, told media that the combined population of China and India is a third of the world’s population, and therefore, both China and India are important world markets.

“Development and prosperity of the world cannot happen without the simultaneous development of India and China,” he added.

He also said a China-India regional trading association would be launched along with an economic trade corridor.

“I will have in-depth discussions with the Indian PM and other leaders to take our relationship forward and settle our differences,” he said.

“With this visit, I hope that both sides increase mutual strategic trust, both countries are ancient civilisations,” he added.

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