One of the five autonomous regions of China, Tibet is located in the Tibetan Plateau. It has a long history of its statehood. Tibet was forcibly incorporated into the PRC and was divided into five regions, one of which in 1965 received the status of the Tibet Autonomous Region.
The titular ethnic group in the autonomy is the Tibetans. They speak the Tibetan that belongs to the Tibet-Burmese subfamily of languages. Tibetans has its own alphabet and script. Apart from their language, their another distinctive feature is Buddhism. The titular group comprises more than 90% of the region's population, with Tibetans also living in separate districts of other provinces of China - Qinghai, Gansu, Sichuan, and Yunnan.
Since the incorporation of Tibet into China, a conflict has continued between supporters of Tibet's independence and the central government. There is a Tibetan government in exile. Armed actions often break out. The use of force by the central government against the Buddhist priests and Tibetan activists is condemned by international organizations, in particular, the United Nations, as well as by the governments of some foreign countries.
The secessionist demands put forward by the Tibetan separatists and the Tibetan government in exile are due to several factors. Among them, historical memory of the violent nature of Tibet's incorporation into China; strict control of the central government over the activities of Tibetan religious organizations; their de facto subordination to the party apparatus of the CCP. Likewise, the assimilation policy of the central government within the framework of the programs of development of the western regions breeds discontent. The situation is aggravated by the very low level of economic development of Tibet in comparison with the rest of the PRC.