Fire has damaged Tibet's iconic Jokhang Temple

Monastery in Lhasa Tibet

One of the most sacred locations in Tibetan Buddhism, the Jokhang Monastery in Lhasa, caught fire on Saturday but there were no reports of any casualties and the extent of the damage was unclear.

Images posted on social media of the blaze showed the eaved roof of a section of the building lit with roaring yellow flames and emitting a haze of smoke.

The blaze started late Saturday and was soon put out without any casualties, according to Chinese state media, which also claimed that cultural relics did not sustain any damage.

A fire has broken out at a Tibetan Buddhist temple in inland China.

The fire comes as Tibetans celebrate Losar, their traditional new year, which began on Friday.

The oldest part of the temple was built more than 1,300 years ago and the whole structure was added to UNESCO's World Heritage list in 2000 as part of the Potala Palace, the official home of successive Dalai Lamas.

Later that year, dozens of monks burst into Jokhang temple to interrupt a state-run foreign media press tour meant to showcase the region's harmony and stability in wake of the protests, accusing the government of lying. Since occupying Tibet in the 1950s, China has been taking a repressive approach to local demands for more autonomy or independence, while restricting visits by outsiders to the region.

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