We report on a ca. 239 Ma mafic dike swarm intruded in the Southern Qiangtang terrane, central Tibet, that was generated on the passive continental margin of a subducting lower plate. The dikes are tholeiitic basalts and exhibit light rare earth element enrichment, modest negative anomalies in Nb and Ta, and enriched isotopic signatures. The dikes are coeval with a back-arc basin formed in the upper plate as a result of the rollback of the Paleo-Tethys oceanic slab. Thus, after ocean-ridge subduction, enhanced slab-pull forces related to slab rollback on one side of the ocean induced extension and magmatism in the passive margin on the opposite side. We argue that enhanced slab-pull forces are a previously unrecognized mechanism for the generation of lower-plate passive-margin magmatism.

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