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TYC Official Statement on International Human Rights Day 2014

Today, as the world commemorates International Human Rights Day, the situation inside Tibet remains tense and perhaps one could arguably say that Tibet is in its most critical period in the nation’s history. The Chinese Government easily evade condemnation despite introducing alarming draconian and oppressive rule due to the failure of intervention by international human rights groups and international media. Paradoxically if such a calamity was unfolding anywhere else in the democratic world, it would have created chaos and uproar in the international community.

On 1 November 2014, reports emerged from Eastern Tibet stated that the Meruma Intermediate People’s Court in Ngaba County sentenced eight Tibetans up to five years’ imprisonment. They were charged with murder for their alleged involvement with self-immolations by Tibetans without a fair trial. Since 2009, 133 Tibetans have self-immolated inside Tibet sacrificing their lives in protest of China’s illegal occupation and for Tibet’s freedom, independence and return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to Tibet. The Chinese government has responded with intimidation, torture, arrests, detention and harassment of family, friends and even co-villagers.

In October this year, the new United Nations human rights chief Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein at his first media briefing expressed his intentions to visit Tibet and announced that he was in communication with the Chinese authorities regarding the matter. The Tibetan Youth Congress has for years lobbied for support at the United Nations and also urged and demanded for officials and independent experts to make a visit. Therefore, we welcome this indication made by the UN human rights chief and urge his excellency that should the Chinese government allow and extend an invitation, he ought to be wary that his visit be not made into another propaganda and publicity stunt favoring the Chinese Communist Party.

Meanwhile, inside Tibet, hundreds of Tibetans on 3 November 2014 gathered outside the Chinese government building in Sangchu County, Amdo, eastern Tibet to protest against unfair and unequal compensation for land in Malinthang. According to reports, a large number of Tibetans staged a protest displaying banners and raising slogans outside the government building, where the high-ranking Chinese officials from Kanlho Prefecture were scheduled to visit. China’s discriminatory practices and denial of equal opportunity for Tibetans continue unabated. The Tibetans were reportedly paid lesser rates of compensation than their Chinese counterparts. Reports of sporadic protests taking place all over Tibet by monks, students, nomads and ordinary Tibetans clearly show that Tibetans are not happy with the present rule in Tibet.

Today we stand with the people of Hong Kong, East Turkestan, Inner Mongolia, Taiwan as well as inside China who continue to suffer under the brutal and inhumane policies of the Chinese Government and extend our support and solidarity in their quest for democracy and freedom. It is time that the corrupt Chinese Government realizes that their days are numbered and should therefore review their hard line policies and move towards making positive reforms according to the wishes and demands of the people. The Tibetan Youth Congress has persistently maintained that the Chinese government cannot be trusted and today events in Hong Kong are testimony to it.

10 December is also a day of joyous ceremony for Tibetans all over the world. It commemorates the conferment of the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize to His Holiness the Dalai Lama in 1989. It has been twenty-five years since and while great strides have been made to improve human rights situations across the world in this span of time, it is evident that the situation inside Tibet has only headed for the worst. Today, the Tibetan Youth Congress calls upon leaders of the world and International human rights organizations to seriously review China’s illegal occupation of Tibet and their current policies. We urge the international community to take a stand and call for appropriate actions against the Chinese government until they are genuinely committed about resolving the issue of Tibet. The world needs to do more. A multi-lateral approach is the only way to hold the Chinese government accountable for their actions. We believe that change is possible.

Finally we would like to convey our warmest wishes to His Holiness the Dalai Lama and congratulate him on this 25th Anniversary of the conferment of the Nobel Peace Prize. We remain forever grateful and thank him for all that he has done for Tibet and the Tibetan people and offer our prayers for his long life.

Victory to Tibet! Bhod Gyalo!