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A Tibetan exile news service said the protests were triggered by the suicide of a 28-year-old monk whom they identified as Tashi Sangpo. Sangpo had been arrested several days earlier at the monastery for keeping a banned Tibetan flag and political leaflets in his room, it said. On Saturday, he escaped from the police station and killed himself by jumping into a river, according to the Phayul.com news service.
"Angry protesters managed to snatch from police the Tibetan national flag that was earlier confiscated by the Chinese officials," said the Phayul report, which also said that thousands were involved in the protest. A short video taken from a cellphone and posted on the group's website showed a large crowd of crimson-robed monks and civilians