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<-Back to WTN Archives Tibetan rights group says China stepped up repression in 1997 (AFP)
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World Tibet Network News

Monday, January 3, 1998



1. Tibetan rights group says China stepped up repression in 1997 (AFP)


NEW DELHI, Dec 31 (AFP) - A Tibetan human rights forum Wednesday accused
China of increasing repression in Tibet during the year.

1997 was marked by "an increasingly intensive momentum by Chinese
authorities to crack down on Tibetans who call for independence and respect
for human rights," the Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy said in a
110-page report.

There were currently 1,216 political prisoners and prisoners of conscience
in Tibetan jails, of whom 295 were women and 39 under the age of 18, according
to the centre, which is based in the northern Indian town of Dharamsala, the
seat of the exiled Tibetan government.

Chinese military seized control of Tibet in 1951. The Dalai Lama, Tibet's
traditional god-king, fled into exile in India eight years later following an
abortive anti-Chinese uprising.

The centre said monks who refused to denounce the Dalai Lama or questioned
Chinese policies in Tibet suffered under a crackdown with 2,827 expulsions,
165 arrests and nine deaths.

"Religious control has been tightened and monastic populations culled," it
said, adding that 613 child monks and nuns had been expelled during the past
two years.

The report said 883 cases of forced abortion and sterilisation were carried
out on Tibetan women in 1997 and added that roughly a third of Tibetan
children received no schooling.

"Most new schooling is built in Tibetan urban centres and is designed for
the education of Chinese settlers," it said.

"In April, officials announced that the Tibetan language would no longer be
the sole language for education in primary schools.

"Tibetan children are now forbidden from wearing Tibetan clothes, eating
Tibetan food, observing Tibetan holidays and carrying photographs of the Dalai
Lama."

Lobsang Nyandak, executive director of the forum, said: "Political,
religious and cultural repression has been intensified in 1997.

"Tibetan people are being progressively stripped of their most precious
collective right: their cultural identity."

The Dalai Lama heads a Tibetan government-in-exile in India.


Articles in this Issue:
  1. Tibetan rights group says China stepped up repression in 1997 (AFP)
  2. Tibet buffeted by record snowfall (AFP)
  3. Earthquakes were fewer but deadlier in 1997 (AP)



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