China Closes Tibet to Foreigners

Move follows self-immolations in Lhasa
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 8, 2012 1:21 AM CDT
Updated Jun 8, 2012 4:10 AM CDT
Tourists walk through Lhasa's Potala Palace, the home of the Dalai Lama before he fled Tibet after a failed Tibetan uprising against Chinese rule in 1959.   (AP Photo/Greg Baker, File)
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(Newser) – Tibet is once again a forbidden zone for foreign tourists. Travel agents say Chinese authorities have told them that foreign tourists are no longer being allowed into the region, and it's not clear how long the ban will last, reports MSNBC. The ban comes at the start of Saga Dawa, a month-long Tibetan Buddhist festival that usually draws thousands of tourists. More than 30 Tibetans have set themselves on fire since March of last year to protest Chinese rule, and the first self-immolations in Lhasa, the Tibetan capital, happened last week. (Read more Tibet stories.)

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