US groups behind Tibet move
The "Tibet independence" movement is supported by some influential US political groups, aiming to hinder the rising geopolitical status of China, a Russian professor told RIA Novosti.
Alexei Maslov, a Sinology expert, and a professor at People's Friendship University of Russia, said the common goal of the Western media reports was to stir up international public opinion and to isolate China as the Beijing Olympics approaches.
They pressed Beijing through the international media and human rights organizations to hold negotiations with the so-called Tibetan government in exile in India. China's stance on this is that Tibet is an inalienable part of China.
The purpose of putting pressure on China is to force Beijing to recognize the issue of "Tibetan sovereignty".
Undoubtedly, such recognition would threaten China's territorial integrity and the Chinese government would not allow this to happen at any time under any circumstances, Maslov said.
Trashing Beijing Road
Rioting began to spread through Beijing Road in Lhasa on March 14. A crowd of several dozen people rampaged along the road, some of them whooping as they threw stones at shops, The Economist reports.
The rioting quickly fanned through the winding alleyways of the city's old Tibetan area south of Beijing Road. Many of these streets are lined with small shops.
Crowds formed, seemingly spontaneously, in numerous parts of the district. They smashed into shops, pulled merchandise onto the streets, piled it up and set fire to it.