Tibet, an autonomous region of China, is located in central Asia between
Himalayan and Kunlun Mountains.
Tibetans have developed their own language, which is different from the
Chinese, and most of them believed in Lamaism, a form of Buddhism. The
religious leader, the Dalai Lama, ruled the region from the 17th century to the
1900s. The British in India achieved some influence in the early 20th century,
and encouraged Tibet to declare its independence from China in 1913.
Chinese Communist troops invaded Tibet in 1950. After a token resistance, Tibet
signed an agreement with China in which China recognized the the spiritual and
temporal leadership of the Dalai Lama, and Tibet recognized the sovereignty of
In 1959, a nationwide revolt triggered by Communist-initiated land reform broke
out. The revolt was crushed, and the Dalai Lama fled to India. The Chinese made
Tibet an autonomous region of China in 1965.
Tibet issued its own currency 1912-1959.
For a more detailed
country profile, see CIA World Factbook on China.