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Q&A About turmoil in Lhasa

1. Q: What is the cause of this incident in Tibet? Did it occur because policemen began to beat the protesting monks first?

A: This beating, smashing, looting and burning incident that took place in Lhasa was masterminded by Tibetan separatist forces inside and outside China who work in close collaboration. Its sole purpose is to stir up troubles during China's CPPCC and NPC Sessions and ahead of the Beijing Olympics. It has to be pointed out that 49 years ago, on 10 March 1959, ruling class in Tibet with Dalai Lama as its head launched an armed rebellion in order to maintain the feudal serfdom. The rebellion was put down, yet since then on March 10 each year, Tibetan separatist forces have tried to create provocations. The incident this year, therefore, is not a casual accident. When handling the incident, China's policemen have all-along carried out law-enforcement measures in accordance with law and have exercised great restraint.

2. Q: Why is monks' protest prohibited by the government of Tibetan Autonomous Region?

A: China is a country ruled according to the law. According to relevant laws of China, application for protests shall be submitted to the government for approval.

3. Q: In the process to calm down the situation, what means and measures did the policemen take? How many armed police forces or army did the Chinese Government mobilize? Were there any shooting incident?

A: We mobilized mainly policemen and armed police from Lhasa and surrounding areas. When handling of the incident, they helped to extinguish fires and remove blocks on road, tended to the dead and wounded and tried their best to protect and rescue local residents. They also protected key areas that bear on national security and people's lives and prevented these areas from being further damaged. In face of violent acts, they took decisive measures and spared no efforts to put an end to beating, smashing, looting, burning and other criminal acts in order to maintain social order. During the whole process, law-enforcement activities by the policemen and armed police were carried out in accordance with law and in a civilized manner. None of them have carried or used any device that will cause human casualty.

4. Q: What's the current number of casualty? Who are those dead and wounded (are they policemen, monks, Tibetans or ethnic Hans)?

A: According to the information at hand, the violent act of beating, smashing, looting and burning had led to the death of 13 innocent civilians. We are still counting on the number of people who were wounded during the incident. There is no information about death of Buddhist monks and nuns.

5. Q: How many people did the police arrest in trying to calm down the situation? Did the police arrest some monks who tried to protest even before the incident?

A: It is quite natural that police make arrest during such a serious and violent incident involving beating, smashing, looting and burning. However, there is no specific number of arrests at the moment. As far as we are concerned, those currently under arrest were all criminals who have participated in the beating, smashing, looting and burning. They will be treated differently, depending on the severity of their behavior and in accordance with law. Some will be hold accountable for their criminal activities, some will be charged as minor offenders and some will be released after being educated. What we can ensure is that we will uphold the rule of law, and safeguard normal life, work, research and other activities of the people in Tibet in accordance with law. Anyone who breaches law will be hold accountable.

6. Q: The Chinese authority said that this incident was masterminded by the Dalai clique. Is there any substantial evidence?

A: The Dalai clique has maintained close contact with separatist forces within China. It is obvious from this incident that separatist forces inside and outside China collaborate and cooperate with each other even from afar. This is sufficient proof that the Dalai clique is behind the incident. We will release relevant evidences at an appropriate time.

7. Q: Why did the Chinese Government interfere with the work of foreign correspondents who were on the spot? Why don't you allow foreign correspondents to visit Lhasa to report on the incident?

A: When such violent acts as beating, smashing, looting and burning took place in Lhasa, it was not safe and appropriate for foreign correspondents to go and report. With the situation in Lhasa calming down, I am sure correspondents will soon be allowed to report from there.

8. Q: Does the Chinese Government have any control on the report of this incident on domestic media?

A: There has never been any media control. China's domestic media, including those in Tibet, have reported and are still reporting on the incident.

9. Q: Is the situation in Lhasa under real control? Will this incident spread to other areas where Tibetan dominates local population? Will such incident reoccur?

A: The situation in Lhasa is calmed down and social order has been restored. People from all ethnic groups in Tibet have expressed their indignation and condemnation of the criminal activities of beating, smashing, looting and burning, and the loss such activities have caused to the lives and property of local people. China has the ability to maintain social order in Tibet, to exercise rule of law and to safeguard the fundamental interests of people from all ethnic groups in Tibet.

10. Q: What's the comment of the Chinese Government on the "grave concern" expressed by the international community on this incident? What effect will the incident have on the upcoming Beijing Olympics?

A: The nature of this incident is crystal. That is, it is a serious and violent incident involving beating, smashing, looting and burning. We hope the international community sees clearly the nature of the incident, as well as the truth of the loss it has caused to people's lives and property. This incident will give you more insights into the attempts of Dalai clique to split China and disrupt with all means the development and stability of Tibet. This is an individual incident that occurred in a certain area and it will soon be over. The social order in Lhasa is now restored and this incident will not have big influence on the Beijing Olympics.

11. Q: What do you think of the comment on this incident by certain people of the Taiwan Authority?

A: There is no point in responding to their comment.

12. Q: What's the death toll of criminal elements?

A: Three criminals suspected of engaging in beating, smashing, looting and burning died during the conflict. Some of them died because they jumped off building to resist arrest.

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