i) Zhang Yangqing, Vice Chairman of the TAR People’s Government and Party Secretary of the Shigatse Municipal Party Committee inspected the border checkpoints and met frontline officers on May 21. He reiterated Xi Jinping’s instructions on the importance of “listening to the party’s command, being loyal to the party, and strict discipline for perennial garrisoning, fighting and dedication in high altitude areas to ensure harmony and stability in the border area.” He added that “everyone must continue to carry forward heroic fighting, fearless sacrifices, and continuous combat, and have a detailed Joint Defense Control against external inputs.” He mandated the Officers to strengthen communication, improve the command system, security system and emergency system to respond to emergencies.  

 ii) The London-based Free Tibet Group citing the research group Tibet Watch (Jun 12) said Beijing is blocking Tibetan Exiles from contacting persons residing in Tibet via WeChat to prevent them from contacting friends and family in Tibet. Monks and nuns living at religious sites outside Tibet like the Sakya Monastery in Uttar Pradesh, India, have been targeted in particular with their WeChat accounts blocked. The accounts were blocked at the request of the Chinese government in an effort to further prevent communication between Tibet and the outside world, particularly targeting religious leaders in exile.

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