Tibetan monk dies from self-immolation

Updated: 2012-01-09 19:58


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GYUMAI, Qinghai - A Tibetan monk in northwest China's Qinghai province died after setting himself on fire early Sunday morning, local officials confirmed on Monday.

Nyage Sonamdrugyu, 40, set himself ablaze at about 4:19 am at an intersection in the town of Gyumai, the county seat of Darlag, said sources with the county committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC).

Sonamdrugyu was a monk from the Nyanmo Monastery in the Tibetan autonomous prefecture of Golog in Qinghai, which borders the Tibet autonomous region.

Sonamdrugyu claimed to be a living Buddha and was known among local believers as "the Living Buddha Sopa."

The body of Sonamdrugyu has been returned to his relatives so they may hold a funeral in accordance with local traditions.

Local police and government authorities are investigating the cause of the incident.