The wave of protests in Tibetan areas of China continued with two more deaths being reported in the last 24 hours.
According to the state media, a Tibetan herdsman set himself on fire late on Friday in the northwestern province of Qinghai.
Quoting local authorities, state-run Xinhua news agency confirmed that Dazheng, 26, died after setting himself on fire in the village of Dageri in Zekog county of the province.
This was the second such case in two days. Xinhua had earlier confirmed the death of another Tibetan teenager, Libong Tsering in the Dowa township of Tongren country in the same Qinghai province.
Meanwhile, a statement from the Dharamshala-based Central Tibetan Administration claimed the death of a 23-year-old former monk after he self-immolated.
“Fresh reports coming out of Tibet say a Tibetan man died after setting himself in Luchu (Chinese: Luqu) in Kanlho in north-eastern Tibet (incorporated into China's Gansu Province) Thursday night, taking the total self-immolations to 80, including 18 in this month alone,” the statement said, adding: “Tadin Kyab, 23, a former monk of Shitsang monastery, set himself on fire at Luchu…”
Many Tibetans in China accuse the government of religious repression and attempts to erode their culture, as the country’s majority Han ethnic group increasingly moves into historically Tibetan areas. They complain of heightened security and also that the authorities were attempting cut off information coming out of Tibetan areas.
Beijing rejects these charges, saying the cases of self-immolations are incited by Dalai Lama and his followers who are based in Dharamshala. Authorities say investment is increasing in Tibetan areas and that Tibetans are free to exercise religious freedom. Modernisation has improved the standards of living of many Tibetans have improved, authorities say.
Officials of the government-in-exile have appealed to Tibetans and supporters around to world to form a coalition with as many human rights groups to organise and participate in the Global Solidarity Day on December 10.