Lhasa, Tibet

The autumn of 1987 found me in Tibet. Arriving by plane from Chengdu, I acclimatised in Lhasa for a few weeks and then travelled to the Chumbi valley in search of signs of the Younghusband’s 1903-1904 expedition to Lhasa. The signs were there – battle scarred forts, defensive walls and the telegraph system that once linked Younghusband with London. Entering through the Chumbi valley, Younghusband fought a battle in the shadow of Mt Chomolari (below); besieged the fortress at Gyanste (below) and marched triumphantly into Lhasa (see below) on 3 August 1904.

I arrived back in Lhasa just in time to witness the demonstrations against the Chinese that took place on 1 October 1987. As far I could establish, eight Tibetans were shot and killed during the demonstrations and a further twenty three were wounded.


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