Lobsang Gyaltsen (Losang Jamcan)
Chairman, TAR People’s Congress
One of the most senior Tibetan leaders in Tibet Autonomous Region. A member of the 19th Central Committee
Pronunciation: Lo-sang Gee-alt-sen (hard ‘G’) soundbite
Born: 1957 in Chamdo Prefecture
Education: Studied Literature at Tibet University for Nationalities in Xianyang, Shaanxi Province. Apparently once taught Marxist theory.
Career: A former mayor of Lhasa and former head of United Front Work Department in the TAR before promotion to Governor in January 2013, since becoming Chairman of the Standing Committee of the TAR People’s Congress.
Prospects: No Tibetan has ever held the post of Party Secretary of TAR.
Relevance to Tibet: One of the most senior Tibetan leaders in Tibet. One of only two Tibetan members of the 19th Central Committee.
Standing in the Party and Career Highlights:
This is a “mini” profile. See Overview box above right.
Lobsang Gyaltsen (often written as Losang Jamcan) was appointed Governor for the TAR in January 2013. At the time Reuters described him as “a hardline ethnic Tibetan” whose appointment was “a signal that the government has no plans to ease up on its tight control on the Himalayan region” Lobsang Gyalten replaced Padma Choling, and was subsequently himself replaced by Che Dalha in 2016, becoming Chair of the Standing Committee of the TAR People’s Congress. He was an Alternate Member of the 18th Central Committee (becoming a full member at the 18th CC’s final plenum in October 2017) and is now a member of the 19th Central Committee (one of only two Tibetans along with Che Dalha).
Lobsang Gyaltsen was formerly mayor of Tibetan capital Lhasa and once taught Marxist theory, according to his official biography. He has a background in the Communist Youth League.
“He’s rather hardline, but all officials at that level are the same,” said prominent Tibetan writer Woeser at the time of Lobsang Gyaltsen’s appointment. “There will be no real change in Tibet.”
This has been borne out by pledges that during his governorship the government would “resolutely struggle” against exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama. “We will unswervingly protect the unity of the motherland and ethnic harmony … and maintain harmony and stability in Tibet,” the China News Service quoted him as saying. “Harmony and stability are the basic guarantee of Tibet’s development and prosperity,” he added.
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