Tourists stranded in Tibet's capital amid the recent protests reported seeing chaos before a curfew was ordered, keeping them inside their hotels, according to the British newspaper the Telegrah.

Riots left at least 30 protesters dead while authorities patrolled the streets in an attempt to quell the violent demonstrations against Chinese rule of Tibet.

A French tourist who was visiting his wife told the Telebraph he saw protesters waving banners.

"It was around 1 p.m. when we saw white banners in the crowd," the tourist told the Telegraph. "Then the police arrived in great numbers and we had to leave. There was a bit of panic."

The exiled Tibetan government in India, which is led by the Dalai Lama, said it confimed that Chinese authorities killed 30 Tibetans and had unconfirmed reports of 100 deaths. It offered no further details.

China's official Xinhua News Agency said 10 people — including two hotel employees and two shop owners — were burned to death, but no foreigners were hurt. It gave no other details. Twelve members of the police and armed police forces were also injured, Xinhua reported later.

Some tourists were trying to convince authorities to allow them to leave, according to the Telegraph.

"There are difficulties in Lhasa, we are not allowed to go out," a German tourist told the newspaper from her hotel. "We want to leave tomorrow by train and go to Beijing."

The U.S. Embassy issued a warning to citizens to stay away from the capital, while trips to Tibet were cancelled.

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.