Saturday, November 18, 2006


Unified and Massive Protests to Mar Hu Jintao's India Visit

By Phurbu Thinley
Phayul Correspondent

Dharamsala, November 18 - As of now, there is no indication of what so ever that India will press Chinese President; Hu Jintao on any of the issues related to Tibet and its people when he visits India later in the coming week.

In fact, New Delhi has, earlier on November 12, served Tenzin Tsundue, a prominent Free-Tibet activist, an order not to move out of Dharamsala till November 25. Tsundue now has policemen watching him all the time.

While Tsundue, may not be able to repeat his usual highly provocative protest during Hu’s visit because of the strict restriction placed on him; the move has, however, helped trigger an intense reaction among Tibetans in exile.

Besides, the deep agonising impact of the recent Nangpa La Pass shooting, which also caused considerable international outrage, is still very much fresh in the minds of Tibetan people.

With all these and knowing there is little chance from New Delhi taking up the Tibetan issue with the Chinese counterpart during their forthcoming meeting, Tibetan refugees here in Dharamsala feel that the ultimate solution should come out of their desperate, yet peaceful actions.Tibetans here in Dharamsala are intolerant of the Hu’s forthcoming visit to India. Posters defying Hu Jintao are seen all over the places here. A collective and massive call for Tibetans, under the banner of six pro-Tibet organisations, to get prepared for action during Hu Jintao’s visit to India has been underway since the past one week.

Tibetan Youth Congress (TYC), Tibetan Women’s Association (TWA), GuChuSum Movement, National Democratic Party of Tibet (NDPT), Students for a Free Tibet (SFT) and Friends of Tibet (FOT) have been calling for Tibetans to stage massive protests on November 19-21 in New Delhi and elsewhere.The organising leaders here said that there is already a strong response from both Tibetans and Tibet-supporters around the world.

The organizers also said that donation-money, for the protest-activities, is continuously pouring in.

Organisers here are expecting varying and repeated protests to mar Hu Jinatao’s India visit and, are constantly calling for more Tibetans and Tibet-supporters to take part in them.

“We are working hard to make sure a unified and strong protests to continue during Hu Jintao’s visit to India”, says Tsundue, who is now actively involved in helping prepare for protests. “We are getting overwhelming response, but we still want more people to come forward. There can be no limit”, adds Tsundue.

More than 8 buses loaded with more than 500 Tibetans and Tibet supporters from Dharamsla left for Delhi late in the evening today to take part in massive rallying protests. Protests will begin from tomorrow, a day before Hu Jintao arrives in Delhi, and will continue till November 21.

The organisers are making sure that the protests during Hu’s India visit to be the strongest and the biggest of its kind so far.Another bus, filled mostly with foreign Tibet supporters, had already left for Delhi earlier in the afternoon today and still there many more are waiting to leave.

A 63 year-old Tibetan woman, Tsering Tsomo, presently staying in an old-age home here, was saddened because she couldn’t board one of the buses today. She had earlier registered herself to take part in the protests, but was stopped by the management of the old-age home due to her health concerns.

“I wish I can join them and be a part of the protesting group”, says Tsering with her eyes blurred by tears. “By the grace of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, I’m sure to see a free Tibet in this life time”, Tsering consoles herself.

According to the organisers, a large number of Tibetans from other parts of India have also left their respected settlements and are due to arrive in Delhi tomorrow morning. Also an overwhelming number of Indian friends will be joining them in Delhi.

See below for the joint-call statement released by the six organizations:

Call for Tibetans to Take Action during Hu Jintao’s India Visit

Chinese President, Hu Jintao, will be visiting India on November 20th to discuss trade relations and border issues with Indian Prime Minister, Man Mohan Singh. India essentially shares border with Tibet and not with China. Yet, if India and China settle on their border disputes, then political analysts fear that Tibetan issue will be diluted and Tibet’s case will soon lose ground. Hu Jintao is attempting to change history with his visit to India. He will try to hammer the final nail into Tibet’s coffin so that our struggle will be buried forever. This is our opportunity to let Hu Jintao and the world know that we ill not keep silent.

Despite continued effort by the Tibetan government not to offend the Chinese government, there has been o reciprocal effort from the Chinese. Just this past May, the Chinese government defamed His Holiness the Dalai Lama in Tibet and reinstated their patriotic re-education of the Tibetan People. Those who fought against the Chinese re-education policy were imprisoned and subjected to various tortures. Tibetans in Tibet enjoy no freedom under Chinese rule, and every year many thousands risk their lives escaping over the Himalayas into exile.

How many Nangpa La shootings must have occurred in the past that we do not know about? How much more evidence do we need of China’s disregard for human rights in Tibet before we act? Let us get together and raise a single and unified voice against the Chinese President, Hu Jintao, when he visits India. We will let him know that he will always be greeted with protests until Tibet is freee.

May we never forget Nangpala. May we never forget Tibet.

Let us work United for the Freedom of Tibet.TYC, TWA, GuChuSum, NDPT, SFT, FOT.Contacts: 9418339697, 9816330413, 9418324751, 9418079832, 9816368335

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