China conducts demolitions at Tibetan Buddhist study site

In this photo taken Monday, April 3, 2017, workers clear timber debris from a demolished part of the house and monastery complex built on the mountain also known as Sertar Buddhist Institution or Larung Gar in Sertar county, southwest China's Sichuan province. Chinese authorities in southwestern Sichuan province have evicted followers and razed scores of homes at one of the world's largest centers of Tibetan Buddhist learning in a months-long operation that has drawn protests from Tibetans in exile. (AP Photo/Charles Tay)
In this photo taken Monday, April 3, 2017, Tibetan Buddhist nuns and monks gather near demolition workers at the house and monastery complex built on the mountain also known as Sertar Buddhist Institution or Larung Gar in Sertar county, southwest China's Sichuan province. Chinese authorities in southwestern Sichuan province have evicted followers and razed scores of homes at one of the world's largest centers of Tibetan Buddhist learning in a months-long operation that has drawn protests from Tibetans in exile. (AP Photo/Charles Tay)
In this photo taken Monday, April 3, 2017, Tibetan Buddhist nuns and monks gather near demolition workers as Chinese tourists are seen at left at the house and monastery complex built on the mountain also known as Sertar Buddhist Institution or Larung Gar in Sertar county, southwest China's Sichuan province. Chinese authorities in southwestern Sichuan province have evicted followers and razed scores of homes at one of the world's largest centers of Tibetan Buddhist learning in a months-long operation that has drawn protests from Tibetans in exile. (AP Photo/Charles Tay)
In this photo taken Monday, April 3, 2017, Tibetan Buddhist nuns and monks gather near demolition workers at the house and monastery complex built on the mountain also known as Sertar Buddhist Institution or Larung Gar in Sertar county, southwest China's Sichuan province. Chinese authorities in southwestern Sichuan province have evicted followers and razed scores of homes at one of the world's largest centers of Tibetan Buddhist learning in a months-long operation that has drawn protests from Tibetans in exile. (AP Photo/Charles Tay)
In this photo taken Monday, April 3, 2017, workers are seem near timber debris amongst a demolished part of the house and monastery complex built on the mountain also known as Sertar Buddhist Institution or Larung Gar in Sertar county, southwest China's Sichuan province. Chinese authorities in southwestern Sichuan province have evicted followers and razed scores of homes at one of the world's largest centers of Tibetan Buddhist learning in a months-long operation that has drawn protests from Tibetans in exile. (AP Photo/Charles Tay)

BEIJING — Chinese authorities in southwestern Sichuan province have evicted followers and razed hundreds of homes at one of the world's largest centers of Tibetan Buddhist learning in a months-long operation that has drawn protests from Tibetans in exile.

Local officials in Garze prefecture say they are carrying out demolitions to prevent overcrowding and to renovate Larung Gar, a sprawling, mountainside settlement that housed more than 10,000 monks and nuns who stayed and studied for months at a time. Authorities are reportedly seeking to cut the population by half, to 5,000.

Overseas Tibetan groups say the forced evictions and demolitions are meant to put a damper on the practice and spread of Tibetan Buddhism. Larung Gar's academy has increasingly attracted large numbers of disciples from China's Han ethnic majority as well as foreign visitors.

Earlier this year, a video circulated on social media that purportedly showed young Tibetan nuns from the monastery being directed to sing about their Chinese-ness and pledge their patriotic loyalty inside a government building.

Several United Nations special rapporteurs wrote to the Chinese government in November to express concern about "serious repression" of Buddhist Tibetan cultural and religious practices in the region.

People also read these

US-born panda Bao Bao makes first public...

Mar 24, 2017

American-born giant panda Bao Bao has made her first appearance before the public in southwestern...

Lewis Hamilton coasts to fifth title at Chinese...

Apr 9, 2017

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton steered clear of a chaotic start to the Chinese Grand Prix and...

China rappers to Seoul: 'Big brother' opposes...

May 17, 2017

A rap group backed by China's government is warning South Korea in a video that "you're going too...

The Latest: Taiwan leader calls Liu Xiaobo a...

Jul 13, 2017

Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen has expressed condolences over Chinese Nobel Peace Prize laureate...

AP Interview: China to lead in organ transplants...

Jul 26, 2017

AP Interview: The chief architect of China's organ transplant program says the country is on track...

Sign up now!

Advertisement

About Us

Asialogue holds a collection of past news for readers to understand what happened before these latest events.