Rights group: Tibetan students dies in self-immolation in China in first such act in 5 months

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An overseas rights group says a Tibetan student has died after setting himself on fire in the first such protest in five months.

The London-based Free Tibet said Monday that Lhamo Tashi burned himself to death on Sept. 17 in the city of Hezuo in the Tibetan prefecture of Gannan in the northwestern province of Gansu.

A request for comment at the local office for the ruling Communist Party was not immediately answered, and calls to the local police bureau rang unanswered. Because of tight information controls in Tibetan regions, independent verification of such incidents is difficult.

About 130 Tibetans have self-immolated since 2009 to protest Beijing's rule over the Himalayan region, and Beijing has responded by punishing those attempting to immolate themselves and also punishing their sympathizers.