BEIJING – Video obtained by an overseas pro-Tibet group shows Chinese security forces beating a man who had set himself on fire in one of several self-immolations by Tibetans protesting Chinese rule.
The Washington-based International Campaign for Tibet says the 45-second video it released Tuesday shows the self-immolation of Losang Jamyang in January in the west China town of Aba.
The footage shows a crowd gathering around a man who suddenly explodes into flames and leaps around. Riot police close in, and an officer uses a pushcart to knock the man down. Other police seem to kick the man after he falls and then blast him with fire extinguishers.
Thirty-two people have set themselves on fire in Tibetan areas over the past year to draw attention to China's restrictions on Buddhism and call for the return from exile of their leader, the Dalai Lama.
A woman surnamed Luo at Aba prefecture's Communist Party propaganda department referred questions to reports by China's official news agencies, saying she was not authorized to speak to the media.
Chinese authorities have confirmed some of the self-immolations — largely through reports by the state-run Xinhua News Agency — but not all.
Heavy security has turned Aba and the surrounding area into a virtual restricted zone since an anti-government uprising across Tibetan communities in 2008, and foreign reporters have had little or no access.