Violence as monks arrested

AN ALTERCATION between a Han Chinese shop owner and Tibetan monks in rural Tibet escalated into an ethnic riot.

Three Buddhist monks from the Baiga temple in Tibet's Naqu district got into a scuffle with the shop owner. Police arrested the monks, but not the shop owner. "The owner attacked the monks first," a Beijing source said.

The monks were taken to the county public security bureau, where they were beaten, they claimed. Several hundred herdsmen went to demand their release, but when their demands were not met, they began smashing shops owned by Han Chinese. They also attacked police officers and smashed cars and government offices.

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