Five Tibetans tried to burn themselves alive in the Chinese province of Siachen to protest the occupation of Tibet by the Chinese army, a spokesman for the Tibetan government in exile told Efe here on Thursday.

"At least two of the people who set fire to themselves died as a result of the burns," Tempa Tsering said.

This is the largest immolation attempt since the beginning more than a year ago of this type of resistance action against the Chinese occupation of Tibet. It comes amid a wave of protests that has taken the lives of about 60 people, most of them Buddhist monks.

According to the Tibetan government in exile, the five people who tried to burn themselves to death on Wednesday were young people and there was one woman among them.

Siachen is part of historically Tibetan territory and has been the scene of a good part of the immolation attempts and the current wave of protest, which the Chinese government attributes to the Dalai Lama, who is living in exile in the northern Indian city of Dharamsala.

Sources with the Tibetan government in exile have denied that the Dalai Lama is promoting the immolation attempts, which - they say - are "individual acts, which are not coordinated, although they have a high political content."

The mass immolation attempt coincides with the beginning of the 18th Chinese Communist Party Congress, at which a change in the top leadership in Beijing is expected. EFE