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Nepal halts Tibetan march to China office, 600 held

June 20, 2008

June 19, 2008 5:21pm IST

KATHMANDU (Reuters) - Hundreds of Tibetan exiles, including nuns and
monks, shouted anti-China slogans and scuffled with police in
Kathmandu on Thursday before being hauled into waiting trucks and
taken to detention centres, police said.

Nearly 600 protesters were detained for trying to storm a visa office
of the Chinese embassy, but it was not clear if they had been charged.

Tibetan exiles in Nepal, numbering about 20,000, have protested
almost every day in Kathmandu since China cracked down to quell an
unrest in Tibet in March.

Shouting "Long Live the Dalai Lama" and "Down with Hu Jintao" the
protesters on Wednesday briefly clashed with police in blue camouflage.

"We want free Tibet," they shouted as they were driven to detention centres.

Some exiles, including women, were seen weeping as the police dragged
them into trucks.

Nepal considers Tibet part of China, a key aid donor, and does not
allow anti-China protests by Tibetans who fled their homeland after
the failed 1959 uprising against Chinese rule.

The exiles nevertheless manage to organise regular protests.

(Reporting by Gopal Sharma)
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