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<-Back to WTN Archives ICT Holds First-Ever European Tibetan Youth Leadership Program
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World Tibet Network News

Published by the Canada Tibet Committee

Saturday, July 12, 2003

3. ICT Holds First-Ever European Tibetan Youth Leadership Program

Brussels, July 9 (ICT) - The inaugural European Tibetan Youth Leadership
Program (TYLP) in Europe, held in Brussels from July 5 to 9, 2003 attracted
13 Tibetans from seven countries. The Program included a visit to the
European Parliament during which the participants attended a meeting of the
European Parliament's Tibet Intergroup and called for concerted action on

The Program began with a call from Mr. Migyur Dorjee of the Bureau du Tibet
in Brussels to the young Tibetans to take the lead in our struggle and to
give due recognition to Tibetan linguistic and cultural heritage. Tsering
Jampa, Executive Director of the International Campaign for Tibet-Europe
welcomed the participants.

Participants had an overview of Tibetan history as well as on the Tibetan
democratic structure in exile. They learnt about initiatives on Tibet at the
United Nations and theoretical situation of Tibet in international law. They
participated in workshops on communication and messaging.
"We are encouraged by the tremendous response to our first initiative in our
Tibetan outreach program," said Tsering Jampa, Executive Director of
International Campaign for Tibet Europe.

There were sessions on looking towards Tibet, studying the economic and
cultural situation there, about developmental projects and role of Tibetan
youth. The TYLP participants received a theoretical explanation of the
concept of non-violence and a testimony of a Chinese perspective of the
Tibetan issue. Participants also discussed the evolving Tibetan culture and
learned about Tibetan performing arts.

The program created a new network of young exile European Tibetans, some of
whom rarely have the opportunity to debate and socialise with other Tibetans
living in their countries. "This is the very first time I am seriously
discussing with my fellow Tibetans on the Tibetan cause. I liked the way the
speakers presented the issues and especially their attention towards our
questions and viewpoints," commented one of the participants during the

They were given a perspective of international support for Tibet and
specifically about the perspective of the situation in Europe. During the
visit to the European Parliament they heard about the efforts that the
parliamentarians are undertaking to support the endeavour of the Dalai Lama
to find a mutually satisfactory solution. Ngawang Sangdrol, former Tibetan
political prisoner, who attended the TYLP, addressed the Intergroup on
Tibet. She spoke of the positive effect that support from the international
community had on the Tibetans inside Tibet, particularly the political
prisoners. Sangdrol told the group that the Dalai Lama's Middle Way Approach
could provide a viable solution to the current critical situation in Tibet.
The youngest member of the group, Tenzin Tseten Zingshuk, spoke on behalf of
the TYLP participants and urged the parliamentarians to continue their
concerted action on Tibet. Mr. Thomas Mann, president of the Tibet
Intergroup in the European Parliament, gave assurance of their commitment to
work on Tibet.

Distinguished speakers at the TYLP were historian Tsering Shakya; Ngawang
Drakmargyapon, UN Affairs Coordinator at the Tibet Bureau in Geneva; Sonam
Tsering Frasi, Tibetan parliamentarian in Europe; Namgyal Lhamo, Tibetan
performing artist; Kate Saunders, Tibet researcher and journalist; Janice
Christensen, campaign & communications consultant, Pathways Inc.; Thupten
Geleg Genkhang, Tibetan journalist (VOA); Christa Meindersma, international
lawyer; Jonathan Sisson of the Interntional Fellowship of Reconciliation;
Sander Tideman of the Bridge Fund; Lodi Gyari, special envoy of H.H. the
Dalai Lama; Luci Jin, Federation for a Democratic China; Tsaye Kelsang;
Kunchok Woser, Ngawang Sangdrol, recent arrivals from Tibet; Kelsang
Gyaltsen, envoy of H.H. the Dalai Lama; Lotte Leicht of the Human Rights
Watch-Europe. Staff from ICT Europe, Germany as well as Washington, D.C.
also acted as resource persons.

Articles in this Issue:
  1. Kalimpong feels let down as trade talks with China take off
  2. The Five Principles
  3. ICT Holds First-Ever European Tibetan Youth Leadership Program
  4. Tibet Tourism Rebounds Quickly

Other articles this month - WTN Index - Mail the WTN-Editors

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