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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?"

Canada Tibet Lobby Days: Tibet groups from across Canada gather in Ottawa

June 05, 2017

Contact:  Max Honigmann (514) 358-3455

 Canadian Tibet Groups Gather in Ottawa:

Urge MPs to stand up for Tibet

Ottawa, June 5, 2017:  Representatives of Tibet groups from across Canada gather in Ottawa this week to meet with Members of Parliament and to urge continued parliamentary support for Tibet.

The annual “Canada Tibet Lobby Days” event is part of an international campaign to build momentum for Tibet in world parliaments.  The past year has witnessed a crackdown on human rights in Tibet, including attacks on freedom of religion, expression, and cultural rights.  At least 4 self-immolation protests have taken place since the beginning of 2017, bringing the total since 2009 to 150. [1]

“The situation in Tibet deteriorates with each passing day” said former Senator Consiglio DiNino, Chair of the Canada Tibet Committee.  “If Canada wants a closer relationship with China, then human rights in Tibet must be part of that discussion.”

“Canadian parliamentarians have a long tradition of supporting the Tibetan cause” said Kalsang Dolkar Gyaltsen, President of the Tibetan Women’s Association. “Now, more than ever, we need their help to ensure that Tibet remains front and centre in the Canada-China relationship”.

“We recognize the importance of business ties between Canada and China, but a frank dialogue on issues such As Tibet and human rights is essential as it reflects Canadian values of freedom and human rights.” said Sonam Chokey, National Director of Students for a Free Tibet Canada.

Canada Tibet Lobby Days is a project of the Canada Tibet Committee, Students for Free Tibet, the Tibetan Women’s Association, the Ottawa Tibetan Community Association, the Tibetan Cultural Association of Quebec, the Canadian Tibetan Association of Ontario, and the Alberta Tibetan Association.  The project takes place in association with the Parliamentary Friends of Tibet, and the Office of Tibet for North America.

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[1] For an annotated list of self-immolations in Tibet, see https://www.savetibet.org/resources/fact-sheets/self-immolations-by-tibetans/

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