Wangdu (activist)

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Wangdu (Chinese: Wangdui) is a former Tibetan monk who became an HIV/AIDS activist at the age of 41. He was sentenced to life imprisonment, and is currently in a hospital.

He was born in the Dagzê County, not far from Lhasa. He was a monk of the Jokhang monastery.

Wangdu participated in the 1989 Tibetan unrest in Lhasa. After being arrested, he became a political prisoner. He was released in 1995, but was prohibited by Chinese law from reintegrating his monastery because he had received a prison sentence.

He then engaged himself in the fight against AIDS while working with Australian institutions, AusAID, then the Burnet Institute, involved in AIDS prevention in Lhasa, in particular towards prostitutes and schools. He was chief of the Burnet Institute project that had since 1999 provided education on the HIV/AIDS in Tibet for prostitutes in bars and brothels.[1] Wangdu was arrested March 14, 2008 at his residence in Lhasa, by the public security bureau at the time of demonstrations in Lhasa in which he had not participated.

On October 27, 2008, he was condemned to life imprisonment by the Intermediary People’s Tribunal of Lhasa.[2] Wangdu, as well as 6 other Tibetans, was accused of spying and of transferring information to outside countries.[3] · [4]

The Burnet Institute did not obtain information concerning Wangdu otherwise than that by the press.[5]

According to TCHRD, at the end of February 2012, Wangdu was in a hospital guarded by three police officers. One of his hands had been broken and his head shaven. His injuries probably resulted from beatings in prison.[6]


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