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"I believe that to meet the challenges of our times, human beings will have to develop a greater sense of universal responsibility. It is the foundation for world peace."

Amnesty seeks 'missing' Tibetans

June 20, 2008

June 18, 2008

More than 1,000 Tibetans detained during protests against the Chinese
government in March remain unaccounted for, Amnesty International says.

In a report, the human rights group said there were reports that
detainees had been beaten and deprived of food.

Ahead of the Olympic torch relay through Tibet, Amnesty asked China
to "shine some light" on the situation.

China says rioters killed at least 19 people. Tibetan exiles say
security forces killed dozens of people.

The anti-China protests led by Buddhist monks - the worst in the
region in 20 years - began in Lhasa on 10 March.

After the riots, pro-Tibetan protesters threw China's global Olympic
torch relay into disarray as it passed through several cities,
including London, Paris and San Francisco.


Olympic organisers in Beijing have confirmed that the torch will
reach Tibet on Saturday.

A planned three-day stay there has been cut to one day because of
schedule adjustments linked to last month's Sichuan earthquake in
China, they said.

With the torch relay about to enter Tibetan areas, this should be an
opportunity to shine some light on the situation there -- Sam Zarifi

The relay will run through the main city, Lhasa, the centre of the
anti-China protests.

Announcing the update report, Amnesty International's Asia-Pacific
Director Sam Zarifi said the information coming out of Tibet painted
"a dire picture of arbitrary detentions and abuse of detainees".

Official reports only provide information on a small number of those
who have been sentenced after questionable trials, Amnesty said.

It said that, with foreign journalists still not allowed into Tibet,
reports coming through friends and family members to the media and
Tibetan organisations suggested that police had carried out hundreds
of raids on monasteries, nunneries and private homes.

"Those who dare to find ways of sending information to foreign media
or human rights organisations regarding protests and arrests, risk
arrest and imprisonment," Amnesty said.

"With the torch relay about to enter Tibetan areas, this should be an
opportunity to shine some light on the situation there," Amnesty's
Sam Zarifi said.

Tibet's spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, has appealed for Tibetans
not to protest during the Olympic Torch visit to the region.

The leader of Tibet's government-in-exile said recently he was fully
supportive of the Games beginning in August, and therefore the torch.

Beijing says the Dalai Lama incited the March violence. He denies
this and accuses the government of human rights abuses.
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