Beijing, Jan. 28 (Reuters): The US said today that it was concerned a Tibetan man executed in China for a spate of bombings and a monk given a suspended death sentence in the same case were not given a fair trial.
“We join the international community in raising concerns over the reported execution of Lobsang Dhondup and the suspended sentence of Tenzin Deleg Rinpoche,” a US embassy spokesman said in Beijing.
The embassy “repeatedly registered deep concerns over the lack of transparency and apparent lack of due process in these cases”, he said.
A court official in Sichuan told Reuters the execution took place on Sunday after the top court in the western province rejected Tenzin Deleg Rinpoche’s appeal and also approved the death sentence on Lobsang Dhondup. Suspended death sentences are usually commuted to life imprisonment in China.
The two men were charged with a string of pro-independence bombings in the Tibetan-populated Sichuan area of Garze over the past few years in which one person was killed, state media said. Many Tibetans resent what they see as the Chinese occupation of the Himalayan region since the People's Liberation Army marched in and imposed Communist rule in 1950, and there has been sporadic violence over the years.
China denied a US request to let an observer attend the trial, the embassy spokesman said.
He said the foreign ministry repeatedly assured the US that the Supreme People’s Court — China’s highest — would review the cases before any sentence was carried out.
In December, US assistant secretary of state Lorne Craner and John Hanford, the ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom, raised the issue while visiting China.