Tibet Autonomous Region

The Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) or Xizang Autonomous Region, called Tibet or Xizang for short (Chinese: 西藏; pinyin: Xīzàng; Mandarin pronunciation: [ɕí.tsâŋ]; literally: 'Western Tsang'; Tibetan: བོད་, Wylie: Bod, ZYPY: Poi, Tibetan pronunciation: [pʰø̀ʔ]), is a province-level autonomous region in southwest China. It was formally established in 1965 to replace the Tibet Area, an administrative division the People's Republic of China (PRC) took over from the Republic of China (ROC) about five years after the dismissal of the Kashag by the PRC following the 1959 Tibetan uprising, and about 13 years after Tibet's incorporation into the PRC in 1951.

The current borders of the Tibet Autonomous Region were generally established in the 18th century[5] and include about half of ethno-cultural Tibet. The Tibet Autonomous Region is the second-largest province-level division of China by area, spanning over 1,200,000 km2 (460,000 sq mi), after Xinjiang, and mostly due to its harsh and rugged terrain, is the least densely populated provincial-level division of the PRC.

Tibet Autonomous Region
Xizang Autonomous Region

Tibetan: བོད་རང་སྐྱོང་ལྗོངས།
Chinese: 西藏自治区
Chinese transcription(s)
 • Chinese characters西藏自治区
(abbreviation: XZ / )
 • PinyinXīzàng Zìzhìqū
(abbreviation: Zàng)
Tsang
Tibetan transcription(s)
 • Tibetan scriptབོད་རང་སྐྱོང་ལྗོངས།
 • Wylie transliterationbod rang skyong ljongs
 • official transcription (PRC)Poi Ranggyong Jong
Map showing the location of the Tibet Autonomous Region
Map showing the location of the Tibet Autonomous Region
Named forབོད་ () is the Tibetan name of the Greater Tibet region.
西藏 (Xīzàng) means "Western Tsang", from Manchu "wargi Dzang", from Tibetan Ü-Tsang. Ü and Tsang are subregions of Greater Tibet.
"Tibet" is from the word Tibat of disputed origin.
Capital
(and largest city)
Lhasa
Divisions5 prefecture-level cities, 2 prefectures, 6 districts, 68 counties, 692 townships
Government
 • Party SecretaryWu Yingjie
 • ChairmanChe Dalha
Area
 • Total1,228,400 km2 (474,300 sq mi)
Area rank2nd
Highest elevation8,848 m (29,029 ft)
Population
 (December 2014)[2]
 • Total3,180,000
 • Rank32nd
 • Density2.59/km2 (6.7/sq mi)
 • Density rank33rd
Demographics
 • Ethnic composition90% Tibetan
8% Han
0.3% Monpa
0.3% Hui
0.2% others
 • Languages and dialectsTibetan, Mandarin Chinese
ISO 3166 codeCN-XZ
GDP (2017)CNY 131.06 billion (31st) [3]
 - per capitaCNY 39,258
USD 5,814 (28th)
HDI (2017)Increase 0.589[4]
medium · 31st
Websitewww.xizang.gov.cn
Tibet
Tibet (Chinese and Tibetan)
"Tibet" in Chinese as "Xīzàng" (top)
and in Tibetan as "Poi" (bottom)
Chinese name
Hanyu PinyinXīzàng
Literal meaning"Western Tsang"
Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR)
Hanyu PinyinXīzàng Zìzhìqū
Literal meaning"Western Tsang" Autonomous Region
Tibetan name
Tibetanབོད་
Manchu name
Manchu scriptᠸᠠᡵᡤᡳ
ᡩᡯᠠᠩ
Romanizationwargi Dzang

History

There is a politically-charged historical debate on the exact nature of relations between Tibet and the Chinese Ming dynasty (1368–1644) and whether the Ming Dynasty had sovereignty over Tibet[6][7][8] after the Mongol conquest of Tibet and Yuan administrative rule in the 13th and 14th centuries. Qing dynasty (1636–1912) rule in Tibet began with their 1720 expedition to the country when they expelled the invading Dzungars, and Tibet was actually first controlled by central government. From 1912 to 1950 Tibet was under de jure suzerainty of the Republic of China, however, the difficulties of establishing a new government in the aftermath of the Xinhai Revolution, the fractious Warlord Era, the Chinese Civil War, and the overwhelming Japanese invasion and occupation before and during World War II left the Republic unable to exert any effective administration. Other parts of ethno-cultural Tibet (eastern Kham and Amdo) had been under de jure administration of the Chinese dynastic government since the mid-18th century;[9] today they are distributed among the provinces of Qinghai, Gansu, Sichuan and Yunnan. (See also: Xikang province)

In 1950, the People's Liberation Army marched into Tibet and defeated the Tibetan local army in a battle fought near the city of Chamdo. In 1951, the Tibetan representatives signed a 17-point agreement with the Central People's Government affirming China's sovereignty over Tibet and the incorporation of Tibet. The agreement was ratified in Lhasa a few months later.[10][11] Although the 17-point agreement had provided for an autonomous administration led by the Dalai Lama, a "Preparatory Committee for the Autonomous Region of Tibet" (PCART) was established in 1955 to exclude the Dalai Lama's government and create a system of administration along Communist lines. Under threat of his life from Chinese forces the Dalai Lama fled to India in 1959 and renounced the 17-point agreement. Tibet Autonomous Region was established in 1965, thus making Tibet a provincial-level division of China.

Geography

The Tibet Autonomous Region is located on the Tibetan Plateau, the highest region on earth. In northern Tibet elevations reach an average of over 4,572 metres (15,000 ft). Mount Everest is located on Tibet's border with Nepal.

China's provincial-level areas of Xinjiang, Qinghai and Sichuan lie to the north, northeast, and east, respectively, of the Tibet AR. There is also a short border with Yunnan province to the southeast. The PRC has border disputes with the Republic of India over the McMahon Line of Arunachal Pradesh, known to the Chinese as "South Tibet". The disputed territory of Aksai Chin (which in India, is part of Jammu and Kashmir) is to the west, and its boundary with that region is not defined. Doklam in Sikkim is also disputed with Bhutan and India. The other countries to the south are Myanmar (Kachin State), Bhutan (Gasa, Lhuntse Thimphu, Trashiyangtse and Wangdue Phodrang Districts) and Nepal (Far-Western, Mid-Western, Western, Central, and Eastern Regions).

Physically, the Tibet AR may be divided into two parts, the lakes region in the west and north-west, and the river region, which spreads out on three sides of the former on the east, south, and west. Both regions receive limited amounts of rainfall as they lie in the rain shadow of the Himalayas, however the region names are useful in contrasting their hydrological structures, and also in contrasting their different cultural uses which is nomadic in the lake region and agricultural in the river region.[12] On the south the Tibet AR is bounded by the Himalayas, and on the north by a broad mountain system. The system at no point narrows to a single range; generally there are three or four across its breadth. As a whole the system forms the watershed between rivers flowing to the Indian Ocean − the Indus, Brahmaputra and Salween and its tributaries − and the streams flowing into the undrained salt lakes to the north.

The lake region extends from the Pangong Tso Lake in Ladakh, Lake Rakshastal, Yamdrok Lake and Lake Manasarovar near the source of the Indus River, to the sources of the Salween, the Mekong and the Yangtze. Other lakes include Dagze Co, Namtso, and Pagsum Co. The lake region is a wind-swept Alpine grassland. This region is called the Chang Tang (Byang sang) or 'Northern Plateau' by the people of Tibet. It is some 1,100 km (680 mi) broad, and covers an area about equal to that of France. Due to its great distance from the ocean it is extremely arid and possesses no river outlet. The mountain ranges are spread out, rounded, disconnected, separated by relatively flat valleys.

The Tibet AR is dotted over with large and small lakes, generally salt or alkaline, and intersected by streams. Due to the presence of discontinuous permafrost over the Chang Tang, the soil is boggy and covered with tussocks of grass, thus resembling the Siberian tundra. Salt and fresh-water lakes are intermingled. The lakes are generally without outlet, or have only a small effluent. The deposits consist of soda, potash, borax and common salt. The lake region is noted for a vast number of hot springs, which are widely distributed between the Himalaya and 34° N, but are most numerous to the west of Tengri Nor (north-west of Lhasa). So intense is the cold in this part of Tibet that these springs are sometimes represented by columns of ice, the nearly boiling water having frozen in the act of ejection.

The river region is characterised by fertile mountain valleys and includes the Yarlung Tsangpo River (the upper courses of the Brahmaputra) and its major tributary, the Nyang River, the Salween, the Yangtze, the Mekong, and the Yellow River. The Yarlung Tsangpo Canyon, formed by a horseshoe bend in the river where it flows around Namcha Barwa, is the deepest, and possibly longest canyon in the world.[13] Among the mountains there are many narrow valleys. The valleys of Lhasa, Xigazê, Gyantse and the Brahmaputra are free from permafrost, covered with good soil and groves of trees, well irrigated, and richly cultivated.

The South Tibet Valley is formed by the Yarlung Tsangpo River during its middle reaches, where it travels from west to east. The valley is approximately 1200 kilometres long and 300 kilometres wide. The valley descends from 4500 metres above sea level to 2800 metres. The mountains on either side of the valley are usually around 5000 metres high.[14][15] Lakes here include Lake Paiku and Lake Puma Yumco.

Government

The Tibet Autonomous Region is a province-level entity of the People's Republic of China. Chinese law nominally guarantees some autonomy in the areas of education and language policy. Like other subdivisions of China, routine administration is carried out by a People's Government, headed by a Chairman, who has been an ethnic Tibetan except for an interregnum during the Cultural Revolution. As with other Chinese provinces, the Chairman carries out work under the direction of the regional secretary of the Communist Party of China. The regional standing committee of the Communist Party serves as the top rung of political power in the region. The current Chairman is Che Dalha and the current party secretary is Wu Yingjie.[16]

Administrative divisions

The Autonomous Region is divided into seven prefecture-level divisions: six prefecture-level cities and one prefecture.

These in turn are subdivided into a total of 66 counties and 8 districts (Chengguan, Doilungdêqên, Dagzê, Samzhubzê, Karub, Bayi, Nêdong, and Seni).

Administrative divisions of Tibet Autonomous Region
Xizang prfc map

     Prefecture-level city district areas

Division code[17] Division Area in km2[18] Population 2010[19] Seat Divisions[20]
Districts Counties
  540000 Tibet Autonomous Region 1,228,400.00 3,002,166 Lhasa city 8 66
5 540100 Lhasa city 29,538.90 559,423 Chengguan District 3 5
4 540200 Shigatse / Xigazê city 182,066.26 703,292 Samzhubzê District 1 17
3 540300 Chamdo / Qamdo city 108,872.30 657,505 Karuo District 1 10
7 540400 Nyingchi city 113,964.79 195,109 Bayi District 1 6
6 540500 Shannan / Lhoka city 79,287.84 328,990 Nêdong District 1 11
2 540600 Nagqu city 391,816.63 462,382 Seni District 1 10
1 542500 Ngari Prefecture 296,822.62 95,465 Gar County 7

Urban areas

  1. ^ a b New districts established after census: Doilungdêqên (Doilungdêqên County), Dagzê (Dagzê County). These new districts not included in the urban area & district area count of the pre-expanded city.
  2. ^ Xigazê Prefecture is currently known as Xigazê PLC after census; Xigazê CLC is currently known as Samzhubzê after census.
  3. ^ Qamdo Prefecture is currently known as Qamdo PLC after census; Qamdo County is currently known as Karuo after census.
  4. ^ Nagqu Prefecture is currently known as Nagqu PLC after census; Nagqu County is currently known as Seni after census.
  5. ^ Nyingchi Prefecture is currently known as Nyingchi PLC after census; Nyingchi County is currently known as Bayi after census.
  6. ^ Shannan Prefecture is currently known as Shannan PLC after census; Nêdong County is currently known as Nêdong after census.

Demography

Historical population
YearPop.±%
1912[22] 1,160,000—    
1928[23] 372,000−67.9%
1936–37[24] 372,000+0.0%
1947[25] 1,000,000+168.8%
1954[26] 1,273,969+27.4%
1964[27] 1,251,225−1.8%
1982[28] 1,892,393+51.2%
1990[29] 2,196,010+16.0%
2000[30] 2,616,329+19.1%
2010[31] 3,002,166+14.7%
Xikang Province / Chuanbian SAR was established in 1923 from parts of Tibet / Lifan Yuan; dissolved in 1955 and parts were incorporated into Tibet AR.

With an average of only two people per square kilometer, Tibet has the lowest population density among any of the Chinese province-level administrative regions, mostly due to its harsh and rugged terrain.[32]

In 2011 the Tibetan population was three million.[33] The ethnic Tibetans, comprising 90.48% of the population,[34] mainly adhere to Tibetan Buddhism and Bön, although there is an ethnic Tibetan Muslim community.[35] Other Muslim ethnic groups such as the Hui and the Salar have inhabited the Region. There is also a tiny Tibetan Christian community in eastern Tibet. Smaller tribal groups such as the Monpa and Lhoba, who follow a combination of Tibetan Buddhism and spirit worship, are found mainly in the southeastern parts of the region.

Historically, the population of Tibet consisted of primarily ethnic Tibetans. According to tradition the original ancestors of the Tibetan people, as represented by the six red bands in the Tibetan flag, are: the Se, Mu, Dong, Tong, Dru and Ra. Other traditional ethnic groups with significant population or with the majority of the ethnic group reside in Tibet include Bai people, Blang, Bonan, Dongxiang, Han, Hui people, Lhoba, Lisu people, Miao, Mongols, Monguor (Tu people), Menba (Monpa), Mosuo, Nakhi, Qiang, Nu people, Pumi, Salar, and Yi people.

According to Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition published between 1910–1911, total population of Tibetan capital of Lhasa, including the lamas in the city and vicinity, was about 30,000, and the permanent population also included Chinese families (about 2,000).[36]

Most Han people in the TAR (8.17% of the total population)[37] are recent migrants, because all of the Han were expelled from "Outer Tibet" (Central Tibet) following the British invasion until the establishment of the PRC.[38] Only 8% of Han people have household registration in TAR, other keep their household registration in place of origin.[34]

Tibetan scholars and Tibetans in exile claim that, with the 2006 completion of the Qingzang Railway connecting the TAR to Qinghai Province, there has been an "acceleration" of Han migration into the region.[39] The exile Tibetan Administration of the Dalai Lama in north India, claims that the PRC will swarm Tibet with migrants in order to alter Tibet's demographic makeup.[40]

Religion

The main religion in Tibet has been Buddhism since its outspread in the 8th century AD. Before the arrival of Buddhism, the main religion among Tibetans was an indigenous shamanic and animistic religion, Bon, which now comprises a sizeable minority and which would later influence the formation of Tibetan Buddhism.

According to estimates from the International Religious Freedom Report of 2012, most of Tibetans (who comprise 91% of the population of the Tibet Autonomous Region) are bound by Tibetan Buddhism, while a minority of 400,000 people (12.5% of the total population of the TAR) are bound to the native Bon or folk religions which share the image of Confucius (Tibetan: Kongtse Trulgyi Gyalpo) with Chinese folk religion, though in a different light.[43][44] According to some reports, the government of China has been promoting the Bon religion, linking it with Confucianism.[45]

Most of the Han Chinese who reside in Tibet practice their native Chinese folk religion (神道; shén dào; 'Way of the Gods'). There is a Guandi Temple of Lhasa (拉萨关帝庙) where the Chinese god of war Guandi is identified with the cross-ethnic Chinese, Tibetan, Mongol and Manchu deity Gesar. The temple is built according to both Chinese and Tibetan architecture. It was first erected in 1792 under the Qing dynasty and renovated around 2013 after decades of disrepair.[46][47]

Built or rebuilt between 2014 and 2015 is the Guandi Temple of Qomolangma (Mount Everest), on Ganggar Mount, in Tingri County.[48][49]

There are four mosques in the Tibet Autonomous Region with approximately 4,000 to 5,000 Muslim adherents,[41] although a 2010 Chinese survey found a higher proportion of 0.4%.[42] There is a Catholic church with 700 parishioners, which is located in the traditionally Catholic community of Yanjing in the east of the region.[41]

Towns and villages in Tibet

"Comfortable Housing"

Beginning in 2006, 280,000 Tibetans who lived in traditional villages and as nomadic herdsmen have been forcefully relocated into villages and towns. In those areas new housing was built and existing houses were remodelled to serve a total of 2 million people. Those living in substandard housing were required to dismantle their houses and remodel them to government standards. Much of the expense was borne by the residents themselves often through bank loans. The population transfer program, which was first implemented in Qinghai where 300,000 nomads were resettled, is called "Comfortable Housing". which is part of the “Build a New Socialist Countryside” program. Its effect on Tibetan culture has been criticized by exiles and human rights groups.[50] Finding employment is difficult for relocated persons who have only agrarian skills. Income shortfalls are offset by government support programs.[51] It was announced in 2011 that 20,000 Communist Party cadres were to be placed in the new towns.[50]

Economy

The Tibetans traditionally depended upon agriculture for survival. Since the 1980s, however, other jobs such as taxi-driving and hotel retail work have become available in the wake of Chinese economic reform. In 2011, Tibet's nominal GDP topped 60.5 billion yuan (US$9.60 billion), nearly more than seven times as big as the 11.78 billion yuan (US$1.47 billion) in 2000. Economic growth since the beginning of the 21st century has averaged over 10 percent a year.[32]

While traditional agriculture and animal husbandry continue to lead the area's economy, in 2005 the tertiary sector contributed more than half of its GDP growth, the first time it surpassed the area's primary industry.[52][53] Rich reserves of natural resources and raw materials have yet to lead to the creation of a strong secondary sector, due in large part to the province's inhospitable terrain, low population density, an underdeveloped infrastructure and the high cost of extraction.[32]

The collection of caterpillar fungus (Cordyceps sinensis, known in Tibetan as Yartsa Gunbu) in late spring / early summer is in many areas the most important source of cash for rural households. It contributes an average of 40% to rural cash income and 8.5% to the TAR's GDP.[54]

The re-opening of the Nathu La pass (on southern Tibet's border with India) should facilitate Sino-Indian border trade and boost Tibet's economy.[55]

In 2008, Chinese news media reported that the per capita disposable incomes of urban and rural residents in Tibet averaged 12,482 yuan (US$1,798) and 3,176 yuan (US$457) respectively.[56]

The China Western Development policy was adopted in 2000 by the central government to boost economic development in western China, including the Tibet Autonomous Region.

Tourism

Potala Palace, August 2009
The Potala Palace in Lhasa, the capital of the TAR.

Foreign tourists were first permitted to visit the Tibet Autonomous Region in the 1980s. While the main attraction is the Potala Palace in Lhasa, there are many other popular tourist destinations including the Jokhang Temple, Namtso Lake, and Tashilhunpo Monastery.[57] Nonetheless, tourism in Tibet is still restricted for non-Chinese passport holders and Taiwan citizens, and presently the only way for foreigners to enter is via Tibet Entry Permit. The permit can only be obtained through a travel agency in Tibet, and travel in Tibet must be arranged in a group tour, in which the group must be accompanied by a licensed tour guide at all times. Those traveling into Tibet must specify every location they want to travel within the TAR, and thus cannot travel anywhere not specified in the application. Before entering on a train, plane, or road leading into Tibet, anyone without a Chinese passport must present the Tibet Entry Permit, or they will otherwise be denied entry. People barred from obtaining the permit are journalists, diplomats, professional media photographers, and government officials.[58]

Transport

Airports

Lhasa airport
Lhasa Gonggar Airport, the biggest airport in TAR

The civil airports in Tibet are Lhasa Gonggar Airport,[59] Qamdo Bangda Airport, Nyingchi Airport, and the Gunsa Airport.

Gunsa Airport in Ngari Prefecture began operations on 1 July 2010, to become the fourth civil airport in China's Tibet Autonomous Region.[60]

The Peace Airport for Xigazê was opened for civilian use on 30 October 2010.[61]

Nagqu Dagring Airport is expected to become the world's highest altitude airport by 2014 at 4,436 meters above sea level.[62]

Railway

The Qinghai–Tibet Railway from Golmud to Lhasa was completed on 12 October 2005. It opened to regular trial service on 1 July 2006. Five pairs of passenger trains run between Golmud and Lhasa, with connections onward to Beijing, Chengdu, Chongqing, Guangzhou, Shanghai, Xining and Lanzhou. The line includes the Tanggula Pass, which, at 5,072 m (16,640 ft) above sea level, is the world's highest railway.

The Lhasa–Xigazê Railway branch from Lhasa to Xigazê was completed in 2014. It opened to regular service on 15 August 2014. The planned China–Nepal railway will connect Xigazê to Kathmandu, capital of Nepal, and is expected to be completed around 2027.[63]

The construction of the Sichuan–Tibet Railway began in 2015. The line is expected to be completed around 2025.[64]

See also

References

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  44. ^ Shenyu Lin. The Tibetan Image of Confucius Archived 13 September 2017 at the Wayback Machine. Revue d’Etudes Tibétaines.
  45. ^ China-Tibet Online: Confucius ruled as a "divine king" in Tibet. 2014-11-04
  46. ^ World Guangong Culture: Lhasa, Tibet: Guandi temple was inaugurated Archived 4 March 2016 at the Wayback Machine.
  47. ^ China-Tibet Online: Tibet's largest Guandi Temple gets repaired. 2013-03-13
  48. ^ World Guangong Culture: Dingri, Tibet: Cornerstone Laying Ceremony being Grandly Held for the Reconstruction of Qomolangma Guandi Temple Archived 7 November 2017 at the Wayback Machine.
  49. ^ World Guangong Culture: Wuhan, China: Yang Song Meets Cui Yujing to Discuss Qomolangma Guandi Temple Archived 4 March 2016 at the Wayback Machine.
  50. ^ a b ""They Say We Should Be Grateful": Mass Rehousing and Relocation Programs in Tibetan Areas of China" (PDF). Human Rights Watch. June 2013. Archived (PDF) from the original on 12 July 2013. Retrieved 28 June 2013.
  51. ^ Jacobs, Andrew (27 June 2013). "Rights Report Faults Mass Relocation of Tibetans". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 27 June 2013. Retrieved 28 June 2013.
  52. ^ "Xinhua – Per capita GDP tops $1,000 in Tibet". news.xinhuanet.com. Xinhua. 31 January 2006. Archived from the original on 9 June 2011. Retrieved 11 October 2011.
  53. ^ "Tibet posts fixed assets investment rise". news.xinhuanet.com. Xinhua. 31 January 2006. Archived from the original on 9 June 2011. Retrieved 11 October 2011.
  54. ^ Winkler D. 2008 Yartsa gunbu (Cordyceps sinenis) and the fungal commodification of rural Tibet. Economic Botany 62.3. See also Hannue, Dialogues Tibetan Dialogues Han
  55. ^ Maseeh Rahman in New Delhi (19 June 2006). "China and India to trade across Himalayas | World news". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 11 October 2011.
  56. ^ "Tibetans report income rises". news.nen.com.cn. Archived from the original on 21 July 2011. Retrieved 11 October 2011.
  57. ^ * Birgit Zotz, Destination Tibet. Hamburg: Kovac 2010, ISBN 978-3-8300-4948-7 [1] Archived 17 January 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  58. ^ "In-depth Guide of How to get to Tibet". www.tibettravel.org. Archived from the original on 19 January 2016. Retrieved 18 January 2016.
  59. ^ "Gongkhar Airport in Tibet enters digital communication age". Xinhua News Agency. 12 May 2009. Archived from the original on 15 December 2010. Retrieved 12 December 2010.
  60. ^ "Tibet's fourth civil airport opens". Xinhua News Agency. 1 July 2010. Archived from the original on 14 December 2010. Retrieved 11 December 2010.
  61. ^ "Tibet to have fifth civil airport operational before year end 2010". Xinhua News Agency. 26 July 2010. Archived from the original on 15 December 2010. Retrieved 12 December 2010.
  62. ^ "World's highest-altitude airport planned on Tibet". news.xinhuanet.com. Xinhua News Agency. 12 January 2010. Archived from the original on 15 December 2010. Retrieved 12 December 2010.
  63. ^ Giri, A; Giri, S (24 August 2018). "Nepal, China agree on rail study". The Kathmandu Post. Archived from the original on 22 September 2018. Retrieved 22 September 2018.
  64. ^ Chu. "China Approves New Railway for Tibet". english.cri.cn. CRI. Archived from the original on 9 November 2014. Retrieved 9 November 2014.

Further reading

  • Hannue, Dialogues Tibetan Dialogues Han, travelogue from Tibet – by a woman who's been travelling around Tibet for over a decade, ISBN 978-988-97999-3-9
  • Sorrel Wilby, Journey Across Tibet: A Young Woman's 1900-Mile Trek Across the Rooftop of the World, Contemporary Books (1988), hardcover, 236 pages, ISBN 0-8092-4608-2.
  • Hillman, Ben, ‘China’s Many Tibets: Diqing as a model for ‘development with Tibetan characteristics?’ Asian Ethnicity, Vol. 11, No. 2, June 2010, pp 269–277.

External links

China National Highway 219

China National Highway 219 (G219) runs along the southwestern border of the People's Republic of China, from Yecheng (Karghilik) in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region to Lhatse in the Tibet Autonomous Region. It is 1,296 miles (2,086 kilometers) in length. Construction of this road was started in 1951. It was completed in 1957. The road passes through disputed area of Aksai Chin, an area administered by the People's Republic of China but also claimed by India, and its construction was one of the triggers for the Sino-Indian War of 1962. Originally made of gravel, it was fully paved with asphalt in 2013.

As one of the highest motorable roads in the world, the breathtaking scenery of Rutok county also ranks as some of the most inhospitable terrain on the planet. Domar township—a town of concrete blocks and nomad tents—is one of the bleakest and most remote outposts of the People's Liberation Army at the edge of the Aksai Chin. Near the town of Mazar many trekkers turn off for both the Karakorum range and K2 base camp. Approaching the Xinjiang border, past the final Tibetan settlement of Tserang Daban is a dangerous 5,050-meter-high pass. Tibetan nomads in the area herd both yaks and two-humped camels. Descending through the western Kunlun Shan, the road crosses additional passes of 4,000 and 3,000 meters, and the final pass offers brilliant views of the Taklamakan Desert far below before descending into the Karakax River basin.

The road passes through Jammu and Kashmir near Mount Kailash and Lake Manasarovar and Pangong Tso.

China National Highway 318

China National Highway 318 (G318) runs from Shanghai to Zhangmu on the China-Nepal border. It is the longest China National Highway at 5,476 kilometres (3,403 mi) in length and runs west from Shanghai towards Zhejiang, Anhui, Hubei, Chongqing, Sichuan, and ends in Tibet Autonomous Region. From Lhasa to Zhangmu it is also called Friendship Highway.

At the Sino-Nepal Friendship Bridge, it connects with the 115 km long Araniko Highway

to Kathmandu.

Dehra Compass

Dehra Compass, also known as Kompas La, is a mountain pass in Aksai Chin, under Chinese control, and claimed by India. 'Dehra' is derived from the Punjabi and Seraiki language word 'dera', meaning camp, while 'Compass' comes from the name of a survey officer, Kompas-Walla. Chinese troops occupied Dehra Compass in 1961.

Dinggyê County

Dinggyê County or Dinjie County or Tingche County or Tingkye County (Standard Tibetan: གཏིང་སྐྱེས་རྫོང་།, Chinese: 定结县) is a county of the Xigazê in the Tibet Autonomous Region, bordering Nepal's Sankhuwasabha and Taplejung Districts to the south and India's Sikkim state to the southeast. Jin Co and Duolo Co are located in this county.

It is one of the four counties that comprise the Qomolangma National Nature Preserve (Dinggyê, Tingri, Nyalam, and Kyirong).

Lake Manasarovar

Lake Manasarovar (Tibetan: མ་ཕམ་གཡུ་མཚོ།, Wylie: ma pham g.yu mtsho; Chinese: 玛旁雍错

(simplified), 瑪旁雍錯(traditional) (Hindi: मानसरोवर )also called Mapam Yumtso, is a high altitude freshwater lake fed by the Kailash Glaciers near Mount Kailash in the Tibet Autonomous Region, China. The lake is revered a sacred place in four religions: Bön, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Jainism.

Lhari County

Lhari County (Chinese: 嘉黎县; pinyin: Jiālí Xiàn; Tibetan: ལྷ་རི་རྫོང་།, Wylie: lha ri rdzong, ZYPY: Lhari Zong) is a small county within the prefecture-level city of Nagqu in the Tibet Autonomous Region.

The 11th Dalai Lama was born in Lhari County, as were both of the rival candidates for the position of the current Panchen Lama.

List of administrative divisions of the Tibet Autonomous Region

Tibet Autonomous Region, an autonomous region of the People's Republic of China, has three administrative divisional levels – prefectural, county, and township – as enumerated in the infobox on the right.

List of modern political leaders of Tibet

The following is a list of modern political leaders of Tibet' within the People's Republic of China. The transition from Lamaist rule started in 1951 with the seventeen point agreement between the Central People's Government and the Dalai Lama. A "Preparatory Committee for the Autonomous Region of Tibet" (PCART) was established in 1956 to create a parallel system of administration along Communist lines. Transition to secular government completed when Tibet Autonomous Region was officially founded in 1965 according to the national autonomy law.The politics in Tibet are structured in a dual party-government system like all other governing institutions in the People's Republic of China. Both the Chairman of the Tibet Autonomous Region and the Chairman of the regional People's Congress, are by law ethnic Tibetans. There is also a branch secretary of the Communist Party of China, who receives deference in disputes.

List of populated places in the Tibet Autonomous Region

This is an alphabetical list of all populated places, including cities, towns and villages, in the Tibet Autonomous Region of western China.

Nagqu Dagring Airport

Nagqu Dagring Airport (Chinese: 那曲达仁机场; pinyin: Nǎqū Dárén Jīchǎng) is a planned airport that will serve Seni in the Nagqu of Tibet. If built it will be the highest airport in the world at 4,436 m (14,554 ft), surpassing Daocheng Yading Airport as the highest. The airport is part of a Chinese government development scheme to build 97 airports across China by 2020. By then, the authorities intend that four-fifths of China's population will be within a 90-minute drive of an airport.

Outline of Tibet

The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to Tibet:

Tibet is a plateau region in Asia and the home to the indigenous Tibetan people. With an average elevation of 4,900 metres (16,000 ft), it is the highest region on Earth and is commonly referred to as the "Roof of the World."

A unified Tibet first came into being under Songtsen Gampo in the 7th century. From the early 17th century until the 1959 uprising, the Dalai Lamas (Tibetan Buddhist spiritual leaders) were, at least nominally, heads of a centralised Tibetan administration, with political power to administer religious and administrative authority over large parts of Tibet from the traditional capital Lhasa. They are believed to be the emanations of Avalokiteśvara (or "Chenrezig" [spyan ras gzigs] in Tibetan), the bodhisattva of compassion.

Qamdo Bamda Airport

Qamdo Bamda Airport (IATA: BPX, ICAO: ZUBD), also known as Changdu Bangda Airport, is an airport serving Qamdo (Changdu), Tibet, China. It is located in the village of Bamda (Bangda).

Shigatse Peace Airport

Shigatse Peace Airport (IATA: RKZ, ICAO: ZURK), Shigatse Heping Airport, or Shigatse Air Base, is a dual-use military and civilian airport serving Shigatse, the second largest city in Tibet Autonomous Region, China. It is located in Jiangdang Township, 43 kilometres (27 mi) from Shigatse. Situated at an elevation of 3,782 metres (12,408 ft), it is one of the highest airports in the world.Construction of Shigatse Airport started in 1968 and was completed in 1973. It was solely for military use until 2010, when a 532 million yuan expansion was completed. On 30 October 2010, the airport was opened as the fifth civilian airport in Tibet.

Siling Lake

Siling Lake (Chinese: 色林错; pinyin: Sèlín Cuò; Tibetan: སེར་གླིང་མཚོ, ZYPY: Sêling Co), is a lake in the Tibet Autonomous Region, to the north of Xainza. Doijiang is located near the lake. Administratively it belongs to Xainza County and Baingoin County of the Nagqu Prefecture.

The lake lies at an altitude of 4530 meters. It is a salt lake. It is fed by the rivers Za'gya Zangbo (or Tsagya Tsangpo) (扎加藏布) and the Boques Tsangpo (波曲藏布).

With an area of 1865 square kilometers, Siling Co is the second largest saltwater lake in the northern Tibetan Plateau and forms part of the Siling Co National Nature Reserve (also Selincuo Reserve or Xainza Nature Reserve). The 400,000 hectare reserve was established in 1993 and contains significant populations of black-necked cranes and some 120 species of birds in total. The lake only has a single species of fish, Gymnocypris selincuoensis, exploited by fishermen. The prairie on the banks of the lake is traditionally used as grazing land for yaks and sheep.

The temperature at the lake is an annual average of -3 to -0.6 °C, the maximum annual temperature 9.4 °C. The average rainfall is 290 millimeters per year, 90 percent of which falls in the months of June to September, often in the summer as hail.

Spanggur Tso

The Spanggur Tso (lake), also called Maindung Co or Mandong Cuo (Chinese: 曼冬错), is a saltwater lake in western Tibet Autonomous Region, China. To the west of the lake lies the Spanggur Gap, and to the north is the Pangong Tso. The lake is at an elevation of 4305 meters, and has an area of 61.6 square kilometres. The lake's average annual temperature is around -4 to -2 ℃, and the annual precipitation is 50 to 75 mm. The western portion of the lake is in the Aksai Chin region that's controlled by China but claimed by India.

China established a military camp in the Spanggur area in 1959. During the Sino-Indian War, Chinese troops attacked and overcame four Indian posts in the area in November 1962.

Tanggula Mountains

The Tanggula (Chinese: 唐古拉山, p Tánggǔlāshān, or 唐古拉山脉, p Tánggǔlāshānmài), Tangla, Tanglha, or Dangla Mountains (Tibetan: གདང་ལ་།, w Gdang La, z Dang La) are a mountain range in the central part of the Tibetan Plateau in Tibet. Administratively, the range is in the Nagqu Prefecture of the Tibet Autonomous Region, with the central section extending into nearby of Tanggula Town and the eastern section entering the Yushu Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Qinghai province.

The Tanggula is the source of the Ulan Moron and Dangqu Rivers, the geographic headwaters of the Yangtze River. The range thus functions as a dividing range between the basin of the Yangtze in the north and the endorheic basins of north-eastern Tibet in the south.

Tibet Area (administrative division)

The Tibet Area was a province-level administrative division of the Republic of China and early People's Republic of China.The Republic of China never had any real control over the area, which was de facto controlled by the Ganden Phodrang government in Lhasa. When the republic was founded in 1912, the Kashag controlled about the same area as the Tibet Area, but later also took control of the western portion of Sikang Province; thus for the most of the Republic of China period, Lhasa controlled an area which was near identical to the contemporary Tibet Autonomous Region.

The People's Republic of China invaded Chamdo (not part of Tibet Area until 1951) in 1950 and incorporated the Dalai Lama-controlled regions in 1951.

Following the 1959 Tibetan rebellion, the State Council of the PRC ordered to replace the Kashag government with the "Preparatory Committee for the Tibet Autonomous Region" which was established in 1956. The current Tibet Autonomous Region was established in 1965.

Tingri County

Tingri County or Dhringgri County (Tibetan: དིང་རི་རྫོང་།, Wylie: ding ri rdzong, ZYPY: Tingri Zong; Chinese: 定日县; pinyin: Dìngrì Xiàn), is a county under the administration of the prefecture-level city of Xigazê in the Tibet Autonomous Region of China.

The county comprises the upper valley of the Bum-chu or Arun River, with the valleys of its tributaries plus the valleys of the Rongshar Tsangpo and the Lapchi Gang Tsanpo which flow south into Nepal. It is bordered on the south by the main range of the Himalayas including Mt. Everest (Tib. Chomolungma), Makalu and Cho Oyu. The present county administration is located at Shelkar, about 87 km (54 mi) east of Tingri (town).It is one of the four counties that comprise the Qomolangma National Nature Preserve (Tingri, Dinjie, Nyalam, and Kyirong).

Yadong County

Yadong County (Chinese: 亚东县), also transliterated from Tibetan as Chomo County (Tibetan: གྲོ་མོ་རྫོང༌།; Chinese: 卓木县 / 绰莫县; literally: 'deep ravine county'), is a frontier county and trade-market of Tibet Autonomous Region, China, situated in the mouth of the Chumbi valley near the China-India and China-Bhutan border. It lies in the middle part of Himalayas and the south of Tibet Autonomous Region, covering about 4,306 square kilometers with a population of 10,000. It is under the jurisdiction of Xigazê.

Transcriptions
Standard Mandarin
Hanyu PinyinXīzàng
Bopomofoㄒㄧ   ㄗㄤˋ
Gwoyeu RomatzyhShitzanq
Wade–GilesHsi1-tsang4
Yale RomanizationSyīdzàng
IPA[ɕí.tsâŋ]
Wu
RomanizationSizaon
Hakka
RomanizationSî-tshông
Yue: Cantonese
JyutpingSai1zong6
Southern Min
Hokkien POJSe-chōng
Teochew Peng'imSai-tsăng
Eastern Min
Fuzhou BUCSă̤-câung
Transcriptions
Standard Mandarin
Hanyu PinyinXīzàng Zìzhìqū
Bopomofoㄒㄧ   ㄗㄤˋ
ㄗˋ   ㄓˋ   ㄑㄩ
Gwoyeu RomatzyhShitzanq Tzyhjyhchiu
Wade–GilesHsi1-tsang4
Tzŭ4-chih4-chʻü1
Yale RomanizationSyīdzàng Dz̀jr̀chyū
IPA[ɕí.tsâŋ tsɹ̩̂.ʈʂɻ̩̂.tɕʰý]
Wu
RomanizationSizaon Zyzychiu
Hakka
RomanizationSî-tshông Tshṳ-tshṳ-khî
Yue: Cantonese
JyutpingSai1zong6 Zi6zi6keoi1
Southern Min
Hokkien POJSe-chōng Chū-tī-khu
Teochew Peng'imSai-tsăng Tsĕu-tī-khu
Eastern Min
Fuzhou BUCSă̤-câung Cê̤ṳ-dê-kṳ̆
Transcriptions
WylieBod
Tibetan PinyinPoi
Lhasa IPA[pʰø̀ʔ]
Administrative divisions in Tibetan, Chinese, and varieties of romanizations
English Tibetan Tibetan Pinyin Wylie transliteration Chinese Pinyin
Tibet Autonomous Region བོད་རང་སྐྱོང་ལྗོངས། Poi Ranggyongjong bod rang skyong ljongs 西藏自治区 Xīzàng Zìzhìqū
Lhasa city ལྷ་ས་གྲོང་ཁྱེར། Lhasa Chongkyir lha sa grong khyer 拉萨市 Lāsà Shì
Xigazê city གཞིས་ཀ་རྩེ་གྲོང་ཁྱེར། Xigazê Chongkyir ggzhis ka rtse grong khyer 日喀则市 Rìkāzé Shì
Qamdo city ཆབ་མདོ་གྲོང་ཁྱེར། Qamdo Chongkyir chab mdo grong khyer 昌都市 Chāngdū Shì
Nyingchi city ཉིང་ཁྲི་གྲོང་ཁྱེར། Nyingchi Chongkyir nying khri grong khyer 林芝市 Línzhī Shì
Shannan city ལྷོ་ཁ་གྲོང་ཁྱེར། Lhoka Chongkyir lho kha grong khyer 山南市 Shānnán Shì
Nagqu city ནག་ཆུ་གྲོང་ཁྱེར། Nagqu Chongkyir nag chu grong khyer 那曲市 àqū Shì
Ngari Prefecture མངའ་རིས་ས་ཁུལ། Ngari Sakü mnga' ris sa khul 阿里地区 Ālǐ Dìqū
Population by urban areas of prefecture & county cities
# City Urban area[21] District area[21] City proper[21] Census date
1 Lhasa[a] 199,159 279,074 559,423 2010-11-01
(1) Lhasa (new districts)[a] 21,093 78,957 see Lhasa 2010-11-01
2 Xigazê[b] 63,967 120,374 703,292 2010-11-01
(3) Qamdo[c] 44,028 116,500 657,505 2010-11-01
(4) Nagqu[d] 42,984 108,781 462,381 2010-11-01
(5) Nyingchi[e] 35,179 54,702 195,109 2010-11-01
(6) Shannan[f] 30,646 59,615 328,990 2010-11-01
Provinces
Autonomous regions
Municipalities
Special administrative regions
Other
County-level divisions of Tibet Autonomous Region
Prefecture-level
city
Prefectures
Regions
Prefectures
and counties
History
Geography
Politics
Economy
Society

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