Nepalese police ordered the Nepal Buddhist Association and Tibetan Buddhist practitioners in Kathmandu to remove a picture of the Dalai Lama during a ceremony today to commemorate the Tibetan leader’s 70th birthday.

The ceremony was being held by about 100 Tibetan Buddhist practitioners, including Nepalese, in the Swayambhunath area of Kathmandu; but the organisers were required to move from the area and hold the ceremony in a nearby monastery. As they walked to the monastery from the hill-top, the monks were not allowed to display the picture, and documents announcing a free medical consultation camp in honor of the birthday were confiscated by police.

The Tibetan community in Kathmandu was allowed to hold a birthday celebration in a Tibetan school, attended by more than 2000 Tibetans, with a photo exhibition on the life of the Dalai Lama.

Following the Nepalese government’s order to close the Tibetan Refugees Welfare Office and the Dalai Lama’s Representative Office in Kathmandu in January, the situation for Tibetans in Nepal has become increasingly insecure.