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China rejects Tibet damage report as ‘lies’

December 14, 2007

Daily Times
Wednesday, December 12, 2007

BEIJING: A report by Tibet’s government in exile accusing China of
sidelining Tibetans and endangering the fragile region’s environment was
rejected by the Chinese Foreign Ministry on Tuesday as “so many lies.”

The report said Beijing should stop dictating and give Tibetans a say in
how the high plateau region is developed. It “will make the Chinese
understand that the development taking place in Tibet does not help the
Tibetan people,” said Kalon Tempa Tsering of the Central Tibetan
Administration, the India-based exile government led by the Dalai Lama.
But Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said at a regular
briefing Tuesday that “Tibet has achieved prosperous social, cultural
and economic development. People are leading a happy life.” “I don’t
want to comment on the report because they have distorted the facts and
told so many lies,” he said. “The basic goal of the Tibetan
government-in-exile, no matter what they say, is to not recognise that
Tibet is part of China. Their goal is to split Tibet from China.” The
report, published Monday, suggested China was to blame for Tibet’s low
literacy rate and the erosion of Tibetan culture, partly because of a
new railroad linking Beijing to the capital, Lhasa, which has brought an
influx of the Chinese Han majority and huge numbers of tourists.

“Many past mistakes can avoid being repeated if Tibetans are treated as
equal partners,” said the report, echoing demands by the Dalai Lama,
Tibet’s exiled spiritual leader, that China give the region full
autonomy. ap
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