A spokesman for Tibet's government-in-exile says 19 Tibetans have died in China's Gansu province in recent days following anti-government protests, raising the total death toll in the region to 99.

Spokesman Thuten Samphel reported the deaths Friday, but provided no details on how the 19 people died.

China says 16 people have been killed since anti-government protests turned violent in the Tibetan capital last week.

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Chinese officials have accused the Dalai Lama and his supporters of organizing violent clashes in Tibet in hopes of sabotaging this summer's Beijing Olympics and promoting Tibetan independence.

The protests have been the biggest challenge in almost two decades to Chinese rule in Tibet.

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