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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?"

Dalai Lama asks Miriam to form Tibet support group in RP

August 27, 2010

Kimberly Jane Tan/KBK
August 26, 2010

A representative of the Dalai Lama has asked Senator Miriam
Defensor-Santiago to create a Tibet Support Group (TSG) in the Philippines.

In a statement released Thursday, Santiago said Lhakpa Tshoko, the
Dalai Lama representative for Japan and East-Asia, wrote her a letter
asking her to help create and head TSG initiatives in the country.

"As a long-time advocate for Tibet, I am honored to accept this
request. I am confident that the TSG in the Philippines will be of
great help to the cause," she said.

TSGs espouse the Tibetan people in their struggle for autonomy and
religious freedom within the People's Republic of China.

China claims Tibet has always been part of its territory, but many
Tibetans say the Himalayan region was virtually independent for
centuries until Chinese troops invaded it in the 1950s.

In a letter dated August 25, Tshoko said the TSG from the Philippines
will be made to participate in the upcoming 6th International
Conference of Tibet Support Groups in Haryana, India from November 5
to 7, 2010.

The conference will be headed by the Indian TSG and will be
facilitated by the Department of Information and International
Relations of India.

Santiago said she would launch an online campaign to find
participants for the Philippine TSG.

Santiago met Tshoko and the Dalai Lama during the 5th World
Parliamentarian's Convention on Tibet held last November in Rome, Italy.
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