China confirms two Tibetans executed over 2008 unrest
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Last Updated: Tuesday, October 27, 2009, 17:17
Beijing: China said on Tuesday that two Tibetans had been executed for their role in deadly ethnic unrest that rocked the Himalayan region last year, the first known use of capital punishment over the violence.

The confirmation by foreign ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu came after several overseas activist groups had reported that up to four Tibetans were shot dead by Chinese firing squads over the violence that erupted in March 2008.

"The two criminals who were executed were found guilty in accordance with the law in both a first trial and an appeals trial," Ma told reporters.

"China's judiciary handled the cases in strict accordance with the law," he said, noting that the verdicts had been reviewed by the Supreme Court.

Ma said he was unaware of the executions of two other Tibetans reported by the Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy.

Judicial authorities in the Tibetan regional capital Lhasa, contacted repeatedly by a news agency, refused to comment on the cases.

Fierce anti-China protests erupted in Lhasa and spread across Tibet and adjacent areas with Tibetan populations in March last year, embarrassing the government in Beijing as it prepared to host the Summer Olympics.

Bureau Report

First Published: Tuesday, October 27, 2009, 17:17

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