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"On my part, I remain committed to the process of dialogue. It is my firm belief that dialogue and a willingness to look with honesty and clarity at the reality of Tibet can lead us to a viable solution."

"Illegal immigration" accusations against marchers to Tibet

June 26, 2008

by Nirmala Carvalho
Asia News (Italy)
June 24, 2008

Tibetan dissidents denounce to AsiaNews: serious and baseless
accusations against those marching toward Tibet. Release of 31
activists awaited, while another ten risk stiff sentences.

Reckongpeo (AsiaNews) - The Indian police have decided to release 31
Tibetan activists who were marching toward their homeland, "but the
10 marchers who were caught by the Indian police for attempting to
sneak into the area have been charged on two counts by the
courts.  One is for entering with area without valid permits, and
secondly for not possessing the registration certificate under the
foreigners registration act. They risk serious penalties".

This is the denunciation issued to AsiaNews by Tsering Choedup, Asia
coordinator of the Tibet Support Network, an international
organisation seeking the independence of Tibet from China.  According
to the activist, "I have spoken with the marchers and they are very
positive and want to continue on their journey back to our homeland
Tibet. The arrests and accusations will be dropped".  For Choedup,
moreover, "the Chinese are trying to showcase their power to the
international community.  By taking the torch through Tibet they are
claiming to legitimise their claim on Tibet.  Their intentions are
clear, and we want no part in this game".

Urgen Tenzin, director of the Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and
Development, recounts: "The whole of Lhasa was flooded with
paramilitary forces, more than the already positioned battalion.  The
Tibetans could not move out of their homes without legal permission.
And the 26 media  outlets covering the Olympic relay were escorted by
Chinese agents".
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