In what has to be the most bizarre story to come out of the self-immolation crisis, a Sichuan court has sentenced a Tibetan man to death for killing his wife and burning her body to make it look as if she’d self-immolated, Xinhua reports.
The Intermediate People’s Court in the Tibetan-Qiang Autonomous Prefecture of Aba handed down the death penalty to Drolma Gya, 32, for homicide, as well as deprived him of political rights for life.
Not sure what’s most ironic about that last line, the need to deprive someone you’re about to execute of their political rights, or the idea that a Tibetan in China has political rights.
The court found that at 11 p.m. on March 11, Drolma Gya choked his 29-year-old wife Kunchok Wangmo to death with a scarf in their apartment in Zoige County following an argument over his drinking.
Drolma Gya had promised to quit drinking but was caught drinking by his wife that night, according to the court.
His wife pretended to strangle herself with a scarf during an ensuing argument, at which point Drolmya Gya grabbed the scarf and told her “if you have suffered this much, I will help you to end it” before strangling her to death, according to the court.
He then took the body outside, doused it with gasoline and set it alight at 2 a.m. the following morning, the court said.
Drolma Gya reportedly hoped to cover up his crime by making it seem like his wife had self-immolated. Chinese authorities have recently taken a more stringent approach to punishing those who survive self-immolation attempts, as well as anyone believed to be encouraging or assisting them.
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