United States Senate offices on Capitol Hill and across the country were buzzing on Wednesday as supporters of the Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act came out en masse to lobby for the bill. The special Lobby Day organized by the International Campaign for Tibet brought together ICT members, Tibetan associations and other activists who urged […]
About International Campaign for Tibet
October 16, 2018
With the clock quickly ticking down before the United States Senate departs for the end of the legislative year, the International Campaign for Tibet will hold an urgent Lobby Day this Wednesday, October 17, 2018. The action comes in response to China’s efforts to stop the Senate from passing the bill, as documented by The Washington Post.
Participants will call on their Senators to cosponsor and support the bill through in-person meetings on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC and in Senate state offices across the nation. They will also reach out to their Senators through online advocacy.
October 15, 2018
The International Campaign for Tibet welcomes the recent establishment of two parliamentary groups on Tibet in France and the Czech Republic, an important sign of the continuous support for the Tibetan people in Europe.
The new Czech Parliamentary Group for Tibet, which was created at the initiative of Dana Balcarová (Pirate Party) and Marek Benda (Civic Democratic Party) in September, was officially launched this week, coinciding with the visit to Prague of the Central Tibetan Administration’s President Lobsang Sangay. It brings together over fifty representatives from both Chambers of the Czech Parliament, making it the largest parliamentary group for Tibet in Europe.
October 11, 2018
- Peaceful solo protests last month by three monks in the Tibetan region of Amdo who have now disappeared are the most recent occurrences of an act of remarkable courage that has become a trend in eastern Tibet since around 2014. This trend seems linked to a wish by protestors to make a strong statement about freedom and loyalty to the Dalai Lama without undertaking the more extreme act of self-immolation.
- Most of the solo protests documented by the International Campaign for Tibet have occurred in Ngaba (Chinese: Aba), Sichuan, since 2014—the same area where the wave of self-immolations began in 2009 when Tapey, a monk of Kirti Monastery, set himself on fire. Not only were most of the self-immolations carried out in the same county town, but also in the same road—which has come to be known as Heroes, or Martyrs, Street—by monks from the same monastery.
October 10, 2018
United States lawmakers and the Trump Administration should push for reciprocal access to Tibet and renewed dialogue between China and the Dalai Lama’s representatives, according to a new report by the Congressional-Executive Commission on China (CECC).
The commission’s Annual Report 2018, released today, documents the deteriorating human rights situation inside China—including in Tibet, a historically independent nation that China annexed in the 1950s.
The report was discussed at a press conference today in the US Congress led by the commission’s chairs, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ).
October 4, 2018
On one side is a luxury hotel with a pyramid design and the word “Paradise” in its title.
On the other side, there’s hell on earth: a prison where Tibetan monks, nuns and laypeople are tortured and sexually abused.
It’s the perfect illustration of China’s double-edged drive to remake Lhasa, Tibet’s ancient capital, into a dream tourist destination while using nightmarish police tactics to crush the Tibetan people.
And it’s just one of several startling images in the International Campaign for Tibet’s new report, “China’s Control State in Lhasa.”
An ICT special report
September 25, 2018
In a major development on the status of Tibet and US-China relations, the US House of Representatives passed the Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act on September 25, 2018.
The bipartisan bill promotes access to Tibet for United States officials, journalists, NGOs and citizens. Under the Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act, the Chinese officials who deny Americans entry to Tibet will be denied entry to the US.
“Today is a great day for human rights,” said Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass), who introduced the legislation alongside Rep. Randy Hultgren (R-Ill.). “The United States must continue to stand squarely for human rights and speak openly against China’s human rights violations in Tibet.”
September 25, 2018
- Three monks in Ngaba, where the wave of self-immolations began in Tibet, have staged solo protests this month, that became prominent in 2014-5.
- Some of those monks sentenced for the same solo protests, which have often involved the demonstrator carrying a photograph of the Dalai Lama, are now being released. But according to two Kirti monks in exile, village police stations are then taking them back into detention for a week or so for ‘re-education’.
On September 5 (2018), Dorje Rabten, aged about 23, staged a public protest in Ngaba (Chinese: Aba) county town, shouting pro-Tibet slogans, according to Kanyag Tsering and Lobsang Yeshe, from the Kirti Monastery in Dharamsala, India. Dorjee Rabten, a monk of Kirti Monastery in Tibet, was arrested by police and is now in detention. He is from Me’uruma township.
September 17, 2018
Supporters and friends from across the world gathered in the Netherlands this weekend for a heartfelt public conversation between the Dalai Lama and International Campaign for Tibet (ICT) Chairman Richard Gere in honor of ICT’s 30th anniversary.
The event, which took place on Sept. 16, was held inside a packed stadium of more than 12,000 people in Rotterdam. It ended with ICT President Matteo Mecacci announcing a new grant by ICT to support the Dalai Lama’s vision of secular ethics.
Top Story: The Dalai Lama visits Europe, commends ICT’s 30 years of service
September 14, 2018
The Dalai Lama, who arrived today in Rotterdam, the Netherlands on the second leg of his European trip, will take part in a conversation with International Campaign for Tibet (ICT) Chairman Richard Gere on Sept. 16, 2018 about how ICT can continue to advance the Dalai Lama’s work.
The discussion is part of the 30th anniversary events of ICT, which was established on March 15, 1988 to support the Tibetan people and the vision of the Dalai Lama.
Over the past three decades, ICT has made significant contributions as a champion of human rights and democratic freedoms for the people of Tibet. The ICT community, now over 100,000 strong and spread across the United States and Europe, is a vibrant collection of individuals who are not only an effective support base for the people of Tibet, but also a powerful voice for resolving conflicts through dialogue instead of violence. Having started with just one office in Washington, DC, today ICT also has offices in Amsterdam, Berlin and Brussels.
Profile of Acting Governor of Qinghai highlights China’s focus on damming and diverting Tibet’s water – despite earthquake risks
September 13, 2018
- China’s religious policies and authoritarian control in Tibet emerge from the leadership’s strategic and economic imperatives, and those interests converged in a visit last month by the Chinese-appointed Panchen Lama to Zam (Chinese: Zangmu) dam, which supports the largest hydropower project in the Tibet Autonomous Region.
- The Acting Governor of Qinghai, Liu Ning, has a career in hydrology and is a former senior member of the official committee for the massive Three Gorges dam, the world’s largest hydropower project and most notorious dam, described by environmentalists as a “model for disaster.” His appointment highlights the high-level focus on exploiting Tibet’s water as a ‘strategic asset’ for China, including in the expansion of the South-North Water Transfer Project.
- China is planning more hydropower dams on Tibet’s major rivers, despite a proven connection between earthquakes and dams on the Tibetan plateau, one of the most seismically active areas in the world.
New European Parliament Report Calls on China to Review its Policies in Tibet, Asks EU to Raise the Issue of Access
September 12, 2018
Brussels – The European Parliament, at its plenary session today in Strasbourg, adopted a new report on EU-China relations that urges China to review its policies in Tibet and review and amend laws, regulations and measures passed in recent years that severely limit the exercise of civil and political rights of Tibetans. It further urges the EU institutions to take the issue of access to Tibet into serious consideration in the discussions on the EU-China visa facilitation agreement
The report, which was prepared by Member of the European Parliament (MEP) Bastiaan Belder (ECR, Netherlands) and was passed by 530 votes to 53 with 55 abstentions, gives a rather detailed and in-depth overview of the state of EU-China relations. It tackles issues such as trade exchanges, China’s Belt and Road initiative, the 16+1 format, digital surveillance, climate change and sustainable development and the human rights situation in the country, and urges the European Union to rebalance its relationship with China, and to press Beijing to improve the overall human rights situation, including in Xinjiang and Tibet.
Top Communist Party officials emphasize ‘Sinicization’ of Buddhism while the China-appointed Panchen Lama visits lake associated with search for the Dalai Lama’s reincarnation
September 11, 2018
- Wang Yang, the fourth highest ranking official in the Politburo hierarchy and head of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), stressed the importance of tighter controls over religion and the new official goal of ‘Sinicizing’—or bringing under Chinese control—Tibetan Buddhism during an ‘inspection tour’ of the Tibetan cities of Lhasa and Chamdo on August 24-26.
September 5, 2018
“Basically, under the Chinese Communist authoritarian rule, under [Chinese President] Xi Jinping, the situation has become much worse.”
That’s how Golok Jigme, a Tibetan activist and former political prisoner, described the current state of his homeland during a recent interview with the International Campaign for Tibet. Video of the interview can be seen below.
Jigme, who fled Chinese-occupied Tibet in 2014 after surviving imprisonment and torture, visited ICT’s headquarters in Washington, DC this summer. He was in town for the US State Department’s first Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom, during which US Vice President Mike Pence praised Jigme by name.
European Parliament’s Intergroup on Religious Freedom reports “severe restrictions” against Tibetan Buddhists
September 4, 2018
In its fourth annual report released today in Brussels, the European Parliament’s Intergroup on Freedom of Religion or Belief and Religious Tolerance has ranked China among the worst violators of freedom of religion worldwide, noting specific concerns regarding the oppression of Uyghur and Tibetan religious practitioners.
The report assesses the state of religious freedom in 34 countries and suggests ways that the EU could be more effective in promoting the protection of this right. The report labels the situation in China as “severe violations”—the worst rank in the study—and calls on the EU to push China “to ensure that policies used to oppress minorities are reversed and that international human rights law is respected.”
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