Virtually all of the Tibetans who have set themselves on fire have communicated a wish for the Dalai Lama to return home to Tibet and for freedom
Over 60 years of repressive Chinese policies and a severe and worsening security crackdown have created a crisis in occupied-Tibet. In the last six years there has been a surge in protests by Tibetans in Tibet, notably in 2008 but increasing again since early 2012, with demonstrators calling for freedom in Tibet and the return of the Dalai Lama. China’s response to such protests has been brutal, with reports of armed police attacking and beating demonstrators and, in a number of cases, opening fire, killing peaceful protesters and seriously injuring many more.
Tibetans have continued to seek to demonstrate their allegiance to the Dalai Lama’s ethos of non-violence with acts of symbolic defiance and expressions of non-violence in line with the teachings of their beloved Dalai Lama.
Since 2009 the crackdown in Tibet by China has provoked an unprecedented wave of self-immolations by Tibetan monks, nuns and laypeople, who have called for freedom for Tibet and the return of the Dalai Lama as they set themselves on fire. There have been at least 138 confirmed self-immolation protests by Tibetans in in Tibet. More than 100 of the protesters have died.
Read more about the current situation in Tibet at Flames in Tibet: Resistance and Repression
Read more about Tibetan Survivors of Self-Immolation: Repression and Disappearance