Geshe Tsewang Namgyal before and after released from Chinese prison recently. Photo: TPI

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Tsewang-Namgyal-TibetDharamshala, India — A Tibetan Buddhist monk jailed for taking part in a peaceful protest against China's repressive policies in Tibet has been recently released from Chinese prison after serving his full term, but has suffered permanent injuries to his legs from police torturing during his imprisonment.

Geshe Tsewang Namgyal, formerly a monk at the Draggo monastery of Karze County in eastern Tibet (in Chinese, Ganzi, Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture), was released on January 24, 2018, sources told TPI, speaking on condition of anonymity. 'But as a result of severe beatings and is now unable to walk properly due to legs injury,' sources said.

Geshe Namgyal, who had gone to India in 1987 to study Buddhism and returned to Tibet in 2011. But he was released in an extremely weak condition, indicating that he may have been severely tortured while in jail,' sources in exiled told the TPI, adding that "it is unknown whether he is getting proper medical treatment and local people were afraid of speaking up about his condition, suddenly go against the local authorities."

Geshe Namgyal, along with Geshe Lobsang Tenzin, Dralha and Thinlay were arrested from an Internet café in Chengdu was arrested on January 23, 2012. Since then, they had remained disappeared for about ten months until their recent sentencing. Another monk, Geshe Tenzin Palsang was detained on 2 April, 2012 in Drango County and since then had remained disappeared until his sentencing.

Months after their arbitrary detention and disappearance, five Tibetan monks from Drakgo Monastery have been sentenced to varying terms of six to seven years in prison for their alleged involvement in 2012 peaceful protest against the China's communist government's authoritarian rule in Tibet.

Tulku Lobsang Tenzin, 40, a reincarnated lama and abbot of Gochen Monastery was sentenced to seven years in prison. Drakgo Monastery's teacher Geshe Tsewang Namgyal, 42, and accountant Tashi Thupwang aka Dralha, 31, were sentenced to six years. The monastery's shop manager Thinlay was sentenced to five years. Geshe Tenzin Palsang aka Tenga, senior caretaker of the monastery, was sentenced to six years.

"My classmate, close friend and brother just released from Chinese prison after six years rejoice at his freedom and pray for quick return to health," Geshe's classmate Tenzin Josh Gluck studied at the Institute of Buddhist Dialectics in India, posted on his Facebook after his release from Chinese prison, adding: "Geshe Tsewang Namgyal charged with crimes against the Chinese regime after six years of imprisonment and torture has just been released however his legs are not in a healthy state."

The Chinese Communist regime began their invasion of Tibet in 1949, reaching complete occupation of the country in 1959. Since that time, more than 1.2 million people, 20% of the nation's population of six million, have died as a direct result of China's invasion and occupation. In addition, over 99% of Tibet's six thousand religious monasteries, temples, and shrines, have been looted or decimated resulting in the destruction of hundreds of thousands of sacred Buddhist scriptures. 

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