Ming Pao: TAR Party Secretary Yang Chuantang Hospitalized, Jampa Phuntsog Running TAR "Daily Work"

February 13, 2006

Yang Chuantang, the Communist Party secretary of the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) since December 2004, suffered an "attack of cardio-cerebral apoplexy" on September 17 and, following emergency surgery in Lhasa, was evacuated to Beijing, according to an October 3 report in the Ming Pao newspaper published in Hong Kong. The Ming Pao account said that Yang received additional treatment in Beijing and is in stable condition. The TAR government press office confirmed the report, and told Ming Pao that Jampa Phuntsog (Xiangba Pingcuo), deputy secretary of the TAR Party Committee and chairman of the TAR government, has assumed control of "daily work."

Yang collapsed following a period of preparation and activity for the 40th anniversary of the Chinese government's creation of the TAR on September 1. The central government sent a high-level delegation led by Jia Qinglin, a Politburo Standing Committee member who also heads the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC).

Considered an ally of President Hu Jintao, Yang Chuantang arrived in the TAR in late 1993 and held senior government and Party positions until he was transferred to Qinghai in October 2003. He served there briefly as governor and returned to the TAR as party secretary at the end of 2004. Analysts consider Yang as less of a hardliner than Chen Kuiyuan, the TAR party secretary from 1992 - 2000.