With the 18th National Congress of Communist Party of China (CPC) that commenced on Thursday marking the beginning of once-in-decade transition in power, the situation aggravated in Tibet as six Tibetans self-immolated in protest against China's occupation of their homeland.
According to the Central Tibetan administration (CTA) officials, five people, including a woman, three teenaged monks and a man, set themselves on fire on Wednesday while one such incident was reported on Thursday.
"The CTA is deeply saddened and concerned to learn the worsening situation in Tibet involving self-immolation by six Tibetans across Tibet since Wednesday. The total self-immolations in Tibet have reached 69, of which 54 protesters have died," said a CTA official.
He added that three monks of Ngoshul monastery - Dorjee (15), Samdub (16) and Dorjee Kyab (16) - set themselves on fire at the entrance of a local police station in Gomang township of Ngaba county in the Amdo region.
"Dorjee died on the spot, while the other two monks were taken to Ngaba county hospital. All three shouted slogans calling for the return of the spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, to Tibet and freedom for Tibetans," said the official.
Citing unnamed sources, the official said situation in Ngaba has become tense with the deployment of reinforcement of security forces across the county, especially at Ngoshul monastery.
"Ngoshul monastery currently has about 130 monks and it is located 12 km west of Ngaba county," said the official.
He said in another incident, Tamdin Tso, a 23-year-old nomadic herder, died after setting herself on fire in Rebgong in north-eastern Tibet while fifth self- immolation was reported from Driru county in Nagchu Prefecture in the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) where a man set himself on fire.
"Fresh reports coming out of Tibet say a Tibetan has self-immolated in Rebgong on Thursday and the CTA will provide more information if details become available," said the official.
It may be recalled that on Wednesday Tibetan parliament-in-exile had made an appeal to upcoming leadership of China to desist from the existing policy of avoidance or the false notion of not accepting the existence of a Tibetan issue and instead revive the channels of meaningful contact to resolve the long-standing issues of Tibet.
The Tibetan leadership had also urged China to seriously deliberate on the continuing spate of self-immolations in Tibet, conduct a thorough investigation into the underlying causes and develop corrective policies and measures that meets the aspiration of the Tibetan people.