Case Testimonies From Interviews With Tibetan Survivors Of Torture. Part 1.

The following case testimonies are from interviews with Tibetan survivors of torture which PHR ( Physicians for Human Rights)  conducted while collecting information for this report.

NR, a Buddhist monk, was 18 years old when he was reportedly arrested and imprisoned for three months for distributing “freedom pamphlets” at a pro-independence demonstration and for possessing a picture of the Dalai Lama.

The Chinese police tied my hands and suspended me from the ceiling and then punched and kicked me and shocked me all over my body with electric cattle prods. They shocked me on the genitals, so my genitals bled and later got infected and it was difficult to urinate. They also beat me on the feet with sticks. In the winter I was made to stand naked against a cold wall for three to four hours at a time a few times each week. During the winter I was also put in solitary confinement for fifteen days. The rest of the time I was kept in a cell, approximately 15 feet by 10 feet with 6 other prisoners. The Chinese police repeatedly beat me with a stick on my left thigh until the stick broke and splintered into my skin. It got infected and took a long time to heal. I was not given any medical care for this. One time, when I said Tibet was free, a prison official put a gun to my head and threatened to kill me.

NC, a Buddhist nun, was 16 years old when she was imprisoned for two years for chanting in a public square, “Long Live Tibet. Free Tibet!” 

“During the first month I was in prison, I was tortured often. I was beaten many times and electrocuted all over my body. When the Chinese tortured me they would yell at me electrocuted all over my body. When the Chinese tortured me they would yell at me “Why do you demonstrate? Don’t you know the Chinese are good for you? You must not say Tibet is free. Tibet is part of China.” One time, they took my blood with a big syringe, even though I told them not to. I think that was for punishment.”

KG reports that he was detained for 1 month without trial after having an argument with a Chinese shopkeeper.

While I was in prison, I was beaten, kicked and punched almost every day. During the beatings, the Chinese guards would yell at me “Are you going to repeat your mistake of  fighting with the Chinese again?” Approximately two or three times a week, I was forced to stand against a cold wall, naked for several hours. I was also frequently shocked with an electric cattle prod on my neck and chest. At one point I was not given any food for approximately three days. During my imprisonment, I was kept in a large room with approximately thirty to forty other prisoners. Since my abuse, I often feel nervous and sad. Sometimes I don’t share with others what happened to me. But my experience has made me more patriotic.

LR reports that when he was 15 years old he was detained after attending a peaceful demonstration.

I was taken to the police station, and repeatedly beaten with sticks and given electric shocks. When I tried to protect myself from the beatings with my hands, the police handcuffed my hands together. I was then suspended by the chain of the handcuffs and beaten all over my body with a piece of a broken chair. I was also shocked again many times including on my head. The shocks were so painful, I passed out, but they would revive me by placing me under cold water. LR reports that he was subsequently imprisoned for 1 year. Each day in prison for the first few weeks, I was interrogated for one and a half to two hour. I was asked about my participation in the demonstration, who the organizers were, and who else had participated. When I refused to answer, I was beaten. This continued  about two times a week for the remainder of the year I was in prison.

LJ, a 25 year-old monk, reported that he was detained for seven days because his brother was in a demonstration.

They kept yelling at me to tell them the truth about planning the demonstration, and then when they said I wasn’t telling the truth they beat me. They beat me all over my body and applied an electric cattle prod to the back of my head. During the seven days I was imprisoned, I was interrogated and tortured for approximately one hour each day. After the interrogation, I was forced to go outside and look directly at the sun for approximately a half hour. They told me that if I didn’t tell them the truth they would beat me again. My brother was also imprisoned and tortured.


Under the Criminal Law of the People’s Republic of China, it is forbidden to extort a confession by torture.(33) Furthermore, China is as signatory to a number of international human rights conventions, legally binding under international law, including the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, and the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Based upon PHR’s investigation, China is in clear violation of these conventions.

Source:   Physicians for Human Rights (PHR)


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