A notice on the bureau's website posted on Tuesday said life in the Tibetan capital, Lhasa, had returned to normal.

 

Chinese authorities barred travel to Tibet and areas in nearby provinces with sizable Tibetan populations in mid-march after violent protests against Chinese rule.

 

Authorities said the ban was for the safety of foreign tourists and journalists.

 

Mainland Chinese tour groups were allowed to resume visits to Tibet at the end of April, while visitors from Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan were allowed to return in May.

 

The announcement that the ban on foreigners would be lifted came just three days after China paraded the Olympic torch through the streets of Lhasa.

 

The tightly-controlled leg of the national torch relay proved Tibet was now "safe" for foreigners, China's state-run Xinhua news agency said on Wednesday.

 

Tibetan exile groups have accused Chinese authorities of using the safety issue as an excuse to hide a massive campaign of arrests and political "re-education" in the wake of the protests.