Samye Ling buddhists killed

The co-founder of the Samye Ling centre in Eskdalemuir has been killed in Chengdu, China, along with two other monks.

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Latest: Akong Rimpoche death

Victim, Akong Tulku Rimpoche Credit: Samye Ling Centre

It's been confirmed that one of the men arrested for allegedly stabbing a Buddhist monk to death in China, had lived at a monastary in Dumfries and Galloway for five years

The victim, Akong Rimpoche, co-founded the Samye Ling Tibetan monastery in Eskdalemuir.

His brother, who is the current abbot there, has released a statement saying one of the three men arrested was resident there and used to make religious sculptures.

He also denied reports that the alleged murder was prompted by a dispute over money.

Murdered Tibetan Lama's last television interview

A Tibetan lama who co-founded the biggest Buddhist monastery in Europe has been murdered along with two colleagues in China.

Akong Rinpoche died alongside his nephew and a friend during a dispute over money in the city of Chengdu, according to the Chinese authorities.

ITV Border's Fiona Armstrong spoke to Akong Rinpoche last month at the Samye Ling Tibetan centre at Eskdalemuir in Dumfries and Galloway. It was the first Buddhist monastery to be founded in Europe.

Akong Rinpoche was interviewed for a two-part documentary for ITV Border, 'A Scottish Journey.'

His personal assistant Gelong Thubten confirmed it was his last television interview.

In it, Akong Rinpoche reflected on how attitudes had changed during his 46 years in Britain and about the ongoing need for cultures to live peacefully side by side:

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Samye Ling to hold 49 days of yoga

The brother of the Tibetan Lama who was killed in China has announced that 49 days of "Milarepa Guru Yoga" will be held at the Samye Ling centre.

Lana Yeshe Rinpoche also thanked his followers for their messages of sympathy:

"My dear friends,"Thank you to all of you who have sent messages of concern and sympathy. We greatly appreciate your kindness.

"Following the advice of Chamgon Khenting Tai Situpa, here in Samye Ling we will be doing Milarepa Guru Yoga for Choje Akong Tulku Rinpoche for 49 days.

"All Samye Dzongs who also wish to do something in their centre for Rinpoche can do either the full Milarepa Guru Yoga or else recite the supplication:

"Je mila shepa dorje la solwandepso". If possible you should do this for 49 days.

"With best wishes to you all,

"Lama Yeshe Rinpoche"

– Lama Yeshe Rinpoche

Lord Steel of Aikwood shocked by death of Rinpoche

Lord Steel of Aikwood opened the main temple at the Samye Ling centre in 1988, and has expressed his sadness following the death of Akong Rinpoche:

"That is shocking dreadful news.

"He was the moving spirit and founder of the Samye Ling monastery just over the hill from Ettrick and I knew him well and did the formal opening of the new temple.

"Thousands who passed through it will be grateful for his ministry."

– David Steel, who opened the main temple in 1988

Dumfriesshire MSP "deeply saddened" by death

Dumfriesshire MSP Elaine Murray has expressed her sympathies following the death of Dr Choje Akong Rinpoche, who founded the Samye Ling Tibetan centre and monastery at Eskdalemuir in 1967.

Reports from China say Mr Rinpoche, along with his nephew and a monk was killed in a residential area of the city of Chengdu.

The Chinese police currently have three suspects in custody with the investigation still on going.

“I was deeply saddened to learn of the death of Mr Rinpoche. His founding of the Samye Ling Tibetan centre had a major impact not just on our region but on Britain as a whole.

"Although he is no longer with us, Mr Rinpoche legacy in our area will endure. My thoughts are with his family and friends at this sad time.”

– Elaine Murray, MSP, Dumfriesshire

Akong Rinpoche raised concerns about safety in China

Akong Rinpoche maintained political ties with Beijing and met Jia Qinglin, then chairman of China's top political advisory body, when he travelled to Britain in 2006.

During this time, he explained Beijing's policies in Tibet, according to the official Xinhua News Agency.

In a talk with Mr Jia, as reported by Xinhua, Akong Rinpoche said:

"Though we have settled abroad for a long time, we are always concerned about the development of our motherland, in particular the development of Tibet.

– Akong Rinpoche

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Tributes on Twitter for Samye Ling founder

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