Tibetan Chinese pilgrims and monks pray at the Lab

Tibetan Chinese pilgrims and monks pray at the Labrang Monastery in a Tibetan area of China, Xiahe

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A Tibetan monk walks past a cart laden with pine tree branches for sale (to burn as offerings) at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

A Tibetan monk walks past a cart laden with pine tree branches for sale (to burn as offerings) at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012. Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture. UPI/Stephen Shaver

Photo: upi.com, upi.com

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      Animal heads are hung from a bridge near the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

      6.86

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

      6.82

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      A young Tibetan boy climbs a hill and looks at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan pilgrims walk on the grounds of the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

      6.22

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims turn prayer wheels and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      A youngTibetan monk walks though a maze of alleys on his way to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

      5.71

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      A Tibetan monk walks past a cart laden with pine tree branches for sale (to burn as offerings) at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

      5.58

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

      5.42

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      A Tibetan monk sits on a hill and looks at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims turn prayer wheels and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

      5.35

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      A Tibetan pilgrim walks past a long hall of prayer wheels at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims burn offerings and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      A Tibetan monk sits on a hill and looks at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Elder Tibetan pilgrims hike to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      A Tibetan pilgrim walks though a maze of alleys on his way to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan monks sit on a hill and look at the massive Labrang Monastery below, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan monks walk though a maze of alleys on their way to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Elder Tibetan pilgrims sit in the sun at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Elder Tibetan pilgrims hike to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk around a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      A Tibetan monk walks through the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      A Tibetan pilgrim prays in the direction off the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      A Tibetan monk climbs a hill to look at the massive Labrang Monastery below, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      A youngTibetan monk plays with his mobile phone at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims turn prayer wheels and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery (Chinese government office in background), the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      A Tibetan boy perches on a wall in front of a prayer hall at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan prayer flags are hung on the closed doors of a temple at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk around a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      A Tibetan monk takes in the afternoon sun on a roofl overlooking part of the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims burn offerings and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk around a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetans encounter closed doors of a temple at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims turn prayer wheels and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan monks walk though a maze of alleys on their way to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      A Tibetan monk takes in the afternoon sun on a hilil overlooking the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      A Tibetan pilgrim walks past a long hall of prayer wheels at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan pilgrims sit in the sun on the grounds of the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk around a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      A Tibetan monk walks through the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan monks walk on the grounds of the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      A Tibetan boy perches on a wall in front of a prayer hall at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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      A goat  eats a glove worn by a worshipper at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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  • A goat  eats a glove worn by a worshipper at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    2

  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    3

  • Tibetan pilgrims sit in the sun on the grounds of the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    4

  • Tibetan monks walk on the grounds of the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    5

  • A Tibetan pilgrim prays in the direction off the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    6

  • Tibetan pilgrims walk on the grounds of the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    7

  • A youngTibetan monk walks though a maze of alleys on his way to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    8

  • A Tibetan pilgrim walks though a maze of alleys on his way to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    9

  • A youngTibetan monk plays with his mobile phone at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    10

  • Tibetan monks walk though a maze of alleys on their way to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    11

  • A Tibetan monk walks through the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    12

  • A Tibetan monk walks through the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    13

  • A Tibetan boy perches on a wall in front of a prayer hall at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    14

  • A Tibetan boy perches on a wall in front of a prayer hall at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    15

  • Elder Tibetan pilgrims sit in the sun at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    16

  • Tibetan monks walk though a maze of alleys on their way to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    17

  • Elder Tibetan pilgrims hike to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    18

  • Elder Tibetan pilgrims hike to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    19

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims burn offerings and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    20

  • Tibetans encounter closed doors of a temple at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    21

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims burn offerings and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    22

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims turn prayer wheels and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    23

  • Tibetan prayer flags are hung on the closed doors of a temple at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    24

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims turn prayer wheels and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    25

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims turn prayer wheels and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    26

  • Animal heads are hung from a bridge near the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    27

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    28

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims turn prayer wheels and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    29

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    30

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    31

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    32

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery (Chinese government office in background), the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    33

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    34

  • A Tibetan monk walks past a cart laden with pine tree branches for sale (to burn as offerings) at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    35

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    36

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    37

  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    38

  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    39

  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    40

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    41

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    42

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    43

  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk around a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    44

  • Tibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    45

  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk around a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    46

  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    47

  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    48

  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    49

  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    50

  • A Tibetan monk takes in the afternoon sun on a roofl overlooking part of the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    51

  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    52

  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    53

  • A Tibetan monk takes in the afternoon sun on a hilil overlooking the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    54

  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    55

  • Tibetan monks sit on a hill and look at the massive Labrang Monastery below, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    56

  • A Tibetan monk sits on a hill and looks at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    57

  • A Tibetan monk climbs a hill to look at the massive Labrang Monastery below, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    58

  • A Tibetan monk sits on a hill and looks at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    59

  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    60

  • A young Tibetan boy climbs a hill and looks at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    61

  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk around a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    62

  • Tibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk around a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    63

  • A Tibetan pilgrim walks past a long hall of prayer wheels at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

    64

  • A Tibetan pilgrim walks past a long hall of prayer wheels at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver

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A goat  eats a glove worn by a worshipper at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan pilgrims sit in the sun on the grounds of the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan monks walk on the grounds of the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA Tibetan pilgrim prays in the direction off the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan pilgrims walk on the grounds of the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA youngTibetan monk walks though a maze of alleys on his way to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA Tibetan pilgrim walks though a maze of alleys on his way to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA youngTibetan monk plays with his mobile phone at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan monks walk though a maze of alleys on their way to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA Tibetan monk walks through the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA Tibetan monk walks through the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA Tibetan boy perches on a wall in front of a prayer hall at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA Tibetan boy perches on a wall in front of a prayer hall at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverElder Tibetan pilgrims sit in the sun at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan monks walk though a maze of alleys on their way to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverElder Tibetan pilgrims hike to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverElder Tibetan pilgrims hike to the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims burn offerings and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetans encounter closed doors of a temple at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims burn offerings and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims turn prayer wheels and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan prayer flags are hung on the closed doors of a temple at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims turn prayer wheels and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims turn prayer wheels and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverAnimal heads are hung from a bridge near the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims turn prayer wheels and pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery (Chinese government office in background), the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA Tibetan monk walks past a cart laden with pine tree branches for sale (to burn as offerings) at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk around a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads and pilgrims pray at a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk around a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA Tibetan monk takes in the afternoon sun on a roofl overlooking part of the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA Tibetan monk takes in the afternoon sun on a hilil overlooking the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk on a dirt path around the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan monks sit on a hill and look at the massive Labrang Monastery below, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA Tibetan monk sits on a hill and looks at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA Tibetan monk climbs a hill to look at the massive Labrang Monastery below, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA Tibetan monk sits on a hill and looks at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks turn colorful prayer wheels surrounding the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA young Tibetan boy climbs a hill and looks at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk around a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverTibetan nomads, pilgrims and monks walk around a white stupa at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA Tibetan pilgrim walks past a long hall of prayer wheels at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen ShaverA Tibetan pilgrim walks past a long hall of prayer wheels at the Labrang Monastery, the largest Tibetan monastery outside of Lhasa, prior to the Tibetan Monlam Festival in Xiahe, Gansu Province on the Tibetan plateau, February 2, 2012.   Tens of thousands of Tibetans are celebrating the Tibetan New Year by making their way to this town and its Labrang Monastery, whose separation from the Tibetan Autonomous Region provides a measure of protection from Han Chinese attempts to regulate their culture.    UPI/Stephen Shaver