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"As long as human rights are violated, there can be no foundation for peace. How can peace grow where speaking the truth is itself a crime?"

Global Tibet movement condemns China's continued crackdown on Tibetan Monastery, calls for immediate international pressure on China to end the crisis in Kirti

May 28, 2011

Sources from Ngaba report that armed Chinese forces continue to maintain a blockade of Kirti Monastery, 'patriotic re-education' sessions are ongoing, and a climate of fear prevails.

The worldwide membership of the International Tibet Network (1), consisting of almost 200 Tibet campaign organizations on six continents, condemns China's continuing crackdown on the monks of Kirti Monastery and Tibetans living in Ngaba, Amdo in Eastern Tibet (Ch: Aba, Sichuan Province). This crackdown, now well into its third month, has to date resulted in well over 300 detentions, three further deaths and the sentencing of two monks to three-year prison terms, following the self-immolation and death of a 20-year old monk named Phuntsok on 16 March (2).

The International Tibet Network calls on governments around the world to issue a public statement of concern about the crisis and to continue to raise it directly with China in the strongest diplomatic terms. We further urge government leaders to convey to China's leaders at every possible opportunity the message that its paramilitary forces must withdraw from Ngaba, all detainees must be unconditionally released and unfettered access must be granted to international observers and media.

On 21 April the crisis intensified when over 300 monks were forcibly taken away from Kirti Monastery by paramilitary police. Elderly Tibetans keeping vigil at the monastery and who tried to prevent the monks being removed were beaten, and two - Dongko (male) and Sherkyi (female), both in their sixties - died (3). The Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy has reported the death of a further young Tibetan named Chukpel on 7 April from injuries sustained during a protest, and in early May two Kirti monks - Lobsang Dhargye and Kunchok Tsultrim - received prison sentences of 3 years each (4). A further 25 detainees are still missing and disappearances are continuing, while sympathetic students at local schools have been subject to investigations and lockdowns (see also note 3). Video footage released on 20 April by Voice of America's Tibetan Service clearly refutes China's claims that the situation in Ngaba is "normal." See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zwmstGsFlJc (5).

Venerable Lobsang Tenzin, head of Kirti Monastery, told the International Tibet Network,
 "At around 3am on April 22, more than three hundred monks were arrested and many went missing. Chinese constitution guarantees religious freedom for all, but for the past two months, the historic Kirti monastery has been turned into a prison. The monastery now faces serious threat of being shut down by the Chinese government. We appeal to world political leaders, religious heads, and devout followers to strongly urge Chinese leaders to stop the crackdown in Kirti monastery."

On 15 April His Holiness the Dalai Lama appealed for restraint, saying,

"The current situation prevailing at Kirti Monastery in Ngaba in northeastern Tibet is extremely grim because of the stand-off between the Chinese military forces and the local Tibetans. The monastery, housing approximately 2500 monks, is completely surrounded by Chinese armed forces, who at one point prevented vital food and other supplies  from entering the monastic compound. […] I am very concerned that this situation if allowed to go on may become explosive with catastrophic consequences for the Tibetans in Ngaba.” (6)

The crackdown in Kirti Monastery and the detention of over 300 monks was raised by the United States government during the recent US/China Strategic Dialogue (9 and 10 May), but Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard and European Council President Herman van Rompuy both apparently failed to discuss the crisis with Chinese leaders during their recent visits to China. Tibetans and Tibet supporters worldwide urge all those involved in future visits and diplomatic exchanges to robustly express their concerns to China's most senior leaders about for the safety of monks and Tibetan lay people in Ngaba, and to call for an end to the human rights abuses being inflicted by Chinese paramilitary forces.

end

Notes


1. The International Tibet Network is a global coalition of 183 Tibet related non-governmental organizations, which works to maximise the effectiveness of the worldwide Tibet movement. Network Member organizations hold varied positions on Tibet's future political status, but all regard Tibet as an occupied country and are dedicated to ending human rights violations in Tibet, and to working actively to restore the Tibetan people's right under international law to determine their own political, economic, social, religious, and cultural status.

2. Tibetan monk Phuntsok, aged 20, immolated himself in the market area of Ngaba on 16 March, the third anniversary of protests at Kirti Monastery in 2008 when police opened fire on and killed at least ten Tibetans. Phuntsok died in hospital on 17 March. For a chronology of events see http://www.tibetnetwork.org/sites/default/files/NgabaTimeline23May2011.pdf. For an updated list of those known to have been detained, see International Campaign for Tibet, 26 May 2011, see http://savetibet.org/media-center/ict-news-reports/crackdown-ngaba-monks-detained-giving-wrong-answers-%E2%80%98patriotic-education%E2%80%99.

3. See International Campaign for Tibet, 9 May 2011, http://www.savetibet.org/media-center/ict-news-reports/ngaba-students-protest-crackdown-authorities-respond-new-information-deaths-tibetans-who-t

4. See Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy updates 5 May 2011 http://www.tchrd.org/press/2011/pr20110507.html which includes photographs of Lobsang Dhargye and Kunchok Tsultrim, and 29 April 2011 http://www.tchrd.org/press/2011/pr20110429.html (warning, graphic image)

5. Detailed analyses of the Voice of America Tibetan Service's video have been published by the International Campaign for Tibet, see http://savetibet.org/media-center/ict-news-reports/dramatic-new-footage-reveals-ngaba-crackdown-refutes-chinese-claims-normal-life and Tibet Society UK, see http://www.tibetsociety.com/content/view/171

6. To read His Holiness' statement in full see http://www.dalailama.com/news/post/663-appeal-by-hh-the-dalai-lama


Signed by Members of the International Tibet Network

Western Europe:
Aide aux Refugies Tibetains
Association Dorje
Association Drôme Ardèche-Tibet
Association Rencontres Tibetaines - C.S.P.T. Midi-Pyrenees
Associazione Italia-Tibet
Austrian Committee for Tibet
Briancon05 Urgence Tibet
Caisse d'Aide aux Prisonniers Tibetains
Casa del Tibet - Spain
Comite de Apoyo al Tibet (CAT)
Comite de Soutien au Peuple Tibetain (Les Lilas)
Comite de Soutien au Peuple Tibetain (Switzerland)
Corse - Tibet
Eco-Tibet France
EcoTibet Ireland
France-Tibet
Free Tibet
Groupe Non-Violent Louis Lecoin, France
Grupo de Apoio ao Tibete, Portugal
International Campaign for Tibet Deutschland
International Campaign for Tibet Europe
International Society of Human Rights, Munich Chapter (IGFM)
Jamtse Thundel Association
La Porte du Tibet, Geneva
Les Amis du Tibet - Belgium
Les Amis du Tibet Luxembourg
Lions Des Neiges Mont Blance, France
Maison des Himalayas
Maison du Tibet - Tibet Info
Nice Tibet - (former: Vercors Tibet Resistances)
Nos Amis de l'Himalaya
Objectif Tibet
Passeport Tibetain
Phagma Drolma-Arya Tara
Reseau International des Femmes pour le Tibet
Save Tibet, Austria
Society for Threatened Peoples International
Solidarite Tibet
Students for a Free Tibet - France
Students for a Free Tibet - UK
Swiss Tibetan Friendship Association (GSTF)
Tibet 59 / 62 
Tibet Democratie
Tibet Initiative Deutschland
Tibet Liberte Solidarite
Tibet Libertes, France 
Tibet Society, U.K.
Tibet Support Group - Ireland
Tibet Support Group - Netherlands
Tibet Unterstutzung Liechtenstein
Tibetan Association of Germany
Tibetan Community Austria
Tibetan Community in Britain
Tibetan Community in Ireland
Tibetan Youth Association in Europe
Tibetan Youth UK
Tibetisches Zentrum Hamburg
TSG Free Tibet And You
Tsowa-Maintenir la Vie, France 
Vrienden Van Tibet

Northern Europe:
Association of Free Tibet 
Friends of Tibet in Finland
Swedish Tibet Committee
The Norwegian Tibet Committee
Tibet Support Committee Denmark
Tibetan Community in Denmark 
Tibetan Community Sweden

Central & Eastern Europe:
Fair Society o.s.
Friends of Tibet Slovakia
Friends of Tibet Society St. Petersburg, Russia
Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights - Tibet Desk
International Youth Human Rights Group - Human Rights in Tibet
Lithuanian Tibet Culture Foundation
Polish Movement for a Free Tibet
Society for Croatia-Tibet Friendship
Students for a Free Tibet, Poland
The Foundation for Civil Society, Russia
Tibet cesky (Tibet in Czech)
Tibet Support Association - Hungary
Tibet Support Group - Krasnodar Region, Russia
Tibet Support Group - Romania
Tibet Support Group - Sochi Region, Russia
Tibetan Programme of The Other Space Foundation
TSG - Slovenia (Formally Foundation Dharmaling)
Union Latvija Tibetai (Latvia for Tibet )
Zida Cels, Latvia

North America:
Association Cognizance Tibet, North Carolina
Bay Area Friends of Tibet
Boston Tibet Network
Canada Tibet Committee
Colorado Friends of Tibet
Committee of 100 for Tibet
CTC - Calgary
Dhokam Chushi Gangdruk
International Campaign for Tibet
International Tibet Independence Movement
Los Angeles Friends of Tibet
Monadnock Friends of Tibet
Northwest Tibetan Cultural Association
Rangzen Alliance
San Diego Friends of Tibet
Santa Barbara Friends of Tibet
Seattle Friends of Tibet
Sierra Friends of Tibet
Students for a Free Tibet
Students for a Free Tibet – Canada
The Tibetan Alliance of Chicago
The World Tibet Day Foundation
Tibet Committee of Fairbanks
Tibet Justice Center
Tibetan Association of Ithaca
Tibetan Association of Northern California
Tibetan Association of Philadephia
Tibetan Association of Santa Fe
Tibetan Association of Southern California
Tibetan Cultural Association - Quebec
TIBETmichigan
Toronto Tibet Youth Congress
U.S. Tibet Committee
Western Colorado Friends of Tibet
Wisconsin Tibetan Association
United Nations for a Free Tibet (UNFFT)

Central and South America
Amigos del Tibet, El Salvafor
Asociacion Cultural Peruano Tibetana
Asociación Cultural Tibetano-Costarricense
Casa Tibet Mexico
Centro De Cultura Tibetana
Grupo De Apoyo a Tibet Chile
Grupo Pro-Cultura Tibetana, Chile
Le Club Francais
Pensando En Tibet - Mexico
Tibet Group-Panama
Tíbet Patria Libre, Uruguay
Fundacion Pro Tibet
World League for Freedom and Democracy - Costa Rica Chapter

Asia
Bharrat Tibbat Sahyog Manch, India
Circle of Friends (Philippines)
Core Group for Tibetan Cause, India
Foundation for Universal Responsibility of H. H. the Dalai Lama
Friedrich-Naumann Foundation
Gannasamannay
Gu-Chu-Sum Movement of Tibet
Himalayan Committee for Action on Tibet
India Tibet Friendship Society
Japan Association of Monks for Tibet (Super Sangha)
Lung-Ta Project
Mahatma Gandhi Tibet Freedom Movement
National Campaign for Tibetan Support, India
National Democratic Party of Tibet
Raise Tibetan Flag Campaign
Roof of the World Foundation, Indonesia
SFT Japan
SFT-India
Students for a Free Tibet - Bangladesh
Taiwan Friends of Tibet
Taiwan Tibet Exchange Foundation
The Youth Liberation Front of Tibet, Mongolia and Turkestan
Tibet Lives, India
Tibet Solidarity Forum, Bangladesh
Tibet Support Group Kiku, Japan
Tibet Support Network Japan
Tibetan Student Association, Madras (TSAM)
Tibetan Parliamentary and Policy Research Centre
Tibetan Rights and Freedom Committee (TRFRC)
Tibetan Women's Association (Central)
Tibetan Youth Congress
Japan Committee of 100 for TIbet
Ns3 Rigpa Community Builder’s Foundation
Anterrashtriya Bharat - Tibbet Sahyog Samiti

Australasia
A.C.T. Tibet Support Group
Australia Tibet Council
Australian Tibet House Inc.
Friends of Tibet New Zealand
Students for a Free Tibet New Zealand
Tibet Action Group of Western Australia
Tibet Support Group - Australia
Tibetan Community of Australia (Victoria)
Tibetan Women Association and Friends Australia
Sakya Trinley Ling
Australian Tibet House Inc.

Africa and Middle East
Friends of Tibet - Isamailia (Egypt)
Israeli Friends of the Tibetan People
South African Friends of Tibet
Tibet Support Group Kenya

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