Satellite images show the widespread demolition. (Images: Free Tibet)Satellite images show the widespread demolition. (Images: Free Tibet)

Satellite images show destruction of one of Tibet’s biggest Buddhist sites

Chinese authorities have destroyed more than half of Yarchen Gar – one of the largest Tibetan Buddhist sites in the world – satellite images by Free Tibet, a London based NGO shows. The demolitions, which were done during the month of August show almost half of Yarchen Gar cleared. In addition to the demolitions, thousands of monks and nuns have also been forced out of their homes and places of worship in Yarchen Gar this year. According to Tibet Watch, research partner of Free Tibet, at least 70 nuns were removed from the site.

“These latest images demonstrate once again the Chinese Communist Party’s contempt for the Tibetan people, who are forced to endure being evicted from their homes and torn away from their communities on the orders of a government that they do not even recognise as their own,” said John Jones, campaigns and advocacy manager for Free Tibet.

Established in 1985, Yarchen Gar is a Buddhist Monastery Complex in Sichuan, China. It liese in an isolated valley 4000 metres above sea level in Pelyul County, Garze Tibetan Autonomous Region. The monastery is associated with the Nyingma tradition of Tibetan Buddhism and has an estimated 10,000 members – most of them females. Free Tibet said that photo evidence suggests Chinese authorities planned to open the site up to tourists, with a hotel and several car parks constructed to the north of the community and roads widened.

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