CHINA - TIBET

One year later, footage of the crackdown

China has always sworn that it committed no acts of brutality in repressing the March 2008 riots in Tibet. One of our Observers for the region has published images which had not been previously seen of the Chinese police's handling of the Tibetan demonstrators.

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China has always sworn that it committed no acts of brutality in repressing the March 2008 riots in Tibet. One of our Observers for the region has published images which had not been previously seen of the Chinese police's handling of the Tibetan demonstrators.

This extract is part of a seven minute compilation published on the official website of the Tibetan government-in-exile, based in Dharamsala, India. It serves to finally offer proof of the alleged police brutality which the Tibetans say caused 222 deaths and 1,000 disappearances.

UPDATE (25 March 2009 - 10am): an unnamed government official from the Tibet Autonomous Region told the state Xinhua news agency on Tuesday night that the video was a lie. "Technology experts found that video and audio was edited to piece together different places, times and people," Xinhua quoted the official as saying.

Until now the Chinese have represented their actions as a healthy suppression of dangerous rebels. They were outraged by calls from the United Nations in November for the country to clarify its measures, accusing it of "prejudice against China" and of fabricating evidence in order to "politicise the issue". But the images captured on this video will be difficult to dismiss; unlike previous footage, this is shot at close range, and the first which shows police assaulting unarmed protesters.