Sunday 11 December 2011

Stand up for Tibet

Urge World Leaders to Stand Up For Tibet

The Tibetan people are facing one of the darkest periods in their history of repression under Chinese rule. Only US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, has spoken out publicly about the self-immolations and called for China to reform its Tibet policies. This public statement of support has given Tibetans everywhere a reason to hope. To stop this crisis other world leaders need to speak out too.
Take Action Now: Send urgent messages demanding World Leaders Stand Up For Tibet

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Tuesday 6 December 2011

Sacrifice by a Tibetan in Chamdo

Phayul[Friday, December 02, 2011 07:51] By Tendar Tsering

DHARAMSHALA, December 2: Various sources are now confirming that another Tibetan has set himself ablaze in Tibet in an apparent protest against the continued Chinese occupation of Tibet.

Tenzin Phuntsok, a former monk in his forties, reportedly self-immolated in Chamdo area of Tibet on Thursday. Tenzin Phuntsok is believed to have survived the self-immolation and has been taken to a local hospital.

No other details are available at the time of reporting.

Tenzin Phuntsok is being described as a former monk of the Karma monastery in Chamdo.

The entire Chamdo region, especially the Karma monastery have been facing increased repression after unconfirmed reports emerged of a bomb blast at a Chinese government building in Chamdo on October 26.

No casualties had been reported, although, following the blast, the Karma monastery was locked down and strict restrictions were placed on its monks.

Kelsang Gyaltsen, a member of the Tibetan Parliament-in-exile had told Phayul that the blast could be a plot to frame false charges against Tibetans.

"In 2001, China did the same thing, they falsely accused and jailed Trulku Tenzin Delek, an influential Tibetan religious leader on charges of a bomb blast," he said. 

The Karma monastery located on the eastern bank of the Dzachu river in Chamdo was founded by the first Gyalwang Karmapa, the head of Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism in the 12th century.
Repression has been intense in Chamdo, particularly since the 2008 pan-Tibet protests. The area witnessed a dramatic tightening of security and the imposition of ‘emergency’ measures by the authorities according to a notice of strategies issued by Chinese government officials in Chamdo in 2009.

The 17th Gyalwang Karmapa in a statement had called the desperate acts of self-immolation being carried out by people with pure motivation as a “cry against the injustice and repression under which they live."

While urging the Chinese leadership to "heed to Tibetans' legitimate demands,” Gyalwang Karmapa said that Beijing "needs to seriously review its policies towards Tibetans and other minorities."

This is the twelfth known case of self-immolation in Tibet since March this year.

Tibetan women delegates keep Tibet alive at Durban climate meet

Phayul[Tuesday, December 06, 2011 16:35]
Tibetan Women's Association delegates carrying out a protest at the ongoing world climate summit in Durban, South Africa. (Photo/TWA)
Tibetan Women's Association delegates carrying out a protest at the ongoing world climate summit in Durban, South Africa. (Photo/TWA)
DHARAMSHALA, December 6: As world leaders accused China of throwing into "confusion" the ongoing world climate talks in Durban, South Africa, Tibetan Women’s Association (TWA) representatives are providing an alternative voice for Tibet at the world’s largest climate change summit.

Tenzin Dolma, Joint secretary and Tenzin Woebum, head of the TWA Women’s Environment and Development Desk, representing Tibet Third Pole (T3P), an international working group of Tibetans and Tibet supporters formed in response to China’s environmental threat to Tibetans and Asians, arrived in Durban on November 28 to take part in the two-week Conference of Parties (COP-17) meeting from November 28 – December 9.

In a release December 5, TWA noted that NGOs, UN observers and the media at the meeting have shown “commendable interest” in the Tibet story and the Tibetan delegation has successfully kept the Tibetan agenda on “high stakes” at the conference despite China’s overwhelming influence.

“It is significant to have the Tibet voice heard in this magnanimous gathering of leaders and activists with vested interest. This is especially so when China is painting a different picture of Tibet,” said Dolma.

According to the release, the TWA delegation have proposed six key demands, which prominently include an immediate halt to all land uses that threaten the Tibetan Plateau's ecosystems, especially the plateau’s water resources; an immediate halt to the removal of Tibetan nomads from the grasslands; and a transparent, inclusive, and participatory trans-boundary resource management and decision-making mechanisms that includes all local and regional stakeholders whose lives depend on these ecosystem services, especially Tibet’s nomadic herders.

“The environmental campaigns by Tibetan delegates include lobbying Government delegates and pressuring them to include Tibet in the negotiations, addressing press conferences and public talks, and making presentations on Tibet’s waters, dams, and the plight of Tibetan nomads,” TWA said.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama has repeatedly urged world leaders to put global interest ahead of domestic interests when dealing with issues that affect the entire world.

“The elected government, sometimes their number one priority is nation, national economy interest, and the global issues are sometimes secondary,” the Dalai Lama had said while addressing an environment conference in Sidney two years back.

“That, I think, should change. The global issues should be number one. In some cases in order to protect global issues, some sacrifice of national interest is must”.

TWA will also be launching a new publication ‘Purging the Treasure House: Displacement and the Status of the Tibetan Nomad’ on December7 at a public event.

11,810 delegates; 1409 NGOs, 86 Inter Governmental Organisations from 200 countries are attending the meeting, working for a breakthrough on the renewal of the global environmental treaty, the Kyoto Protocol, which expires next year.

Leaked photos show Chinese brutality in Tibet

Phayul[Sunday, December 04, 2011 21:21]
DHARAMSHALA December 4: Photos depicting China’s brutality in Tibet and the Chinese security official’s high-handed and vulgar display of power over Tibetan monks and commoners have been leaked out of Tibet.

A Chinese website based in US -, on Friday released eight photographs of Tibetans with their hands tied at their backs, being paraded publicly in military vehicles, escorted by security officials, and kneeling on the ground. Placards with their names and their “crimes” such as “separatist” are seen hung from their necks.

Other photos also show large contingents of People's Armed Police and Special Branch of People's Armed Police carrying automatic rifles, manning the streets.
While the website didn’t provide exact locations and date of the pictures, individuals and organisations in exile have identified few of the photographs.

Speaking to Phayul, a monk at the exile base of the Kirti Monastery in Dharamshala, Kanyag Tsering identified that four of the photos were from Ngaba in eastern Tibet.

“The ground where hundreds of Chinese armed security personnel are sitting is a public basketball ground in Ngaba Kriti town” Tsering told Phayul.

“The photo taken from inside a car is also in Kriti as you can visibly see the Kriti monastery stupa at the back with Chinese security officials manning the intersection with automatic rifles right at the front,” added Tsering.

Although Tsering wasn’t sure of the dates when the photographs were taken, the exiled monk recognised the houses and the streets in two other photos with armed Chinese security personnel marching in a show of power.

“The photograph showing Chinese security forces in green and blue uniform is taken near the Ngaba town court,” said Tsering.

The Kirti monastery in Ngaba and its surrounding regions have been facing growing restrictions since March this year after Phuntsog, a young Kirti monk self immolated protesting China’s occupation of Tibet and calling for the Dalai Lama’s return from exile.

Since then, eleven more Tibetans, including monks, nuns, and lay people have set their bodies on fire, the latest being Tenzin Phuntsok who set himself ablaze in Chamdo on December 1.

In the only on-ground report from Ngaba since March this year by foreign journalists, Robert Saiget, an AFP reporter in October said that “police, many carrying riot shields and armed with clubs and iron, lined the streets of the town”.

“Large groups of soldiers in camouflage carried automatic rifles, metal rods with spiked tips and fire extinguishers, while police buses, trucks and armoured personnel carriers blocked the streets,” AFP had reported in accord with the recently leaked photographs.

Writing on Facebook, the Beijing based award-winning Tibetan blogger and activist Woeser said that she was shocked to see the pictures.

“These photos clearly show the suppression of the truth of the Tibetans,” Woeser said.