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NGOs Urge US Government to Press China on Human Rights

Early next week in Beijing, the U.S. and China will hold its 8th Strategic and Economic Dialogue, the last of the Obama Administration

June 2, 2016

Earlier today, in advance of the Obama Administration’s final U.S.-China Strategic & Economic Dialogue (S&ED) which will convene in Beijing June 6-8, the International Campaign for Tibet, along with nine other advocacy NGOs, sent a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry and Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew, calling on the Administration to press China publicly on a wide range of human rights issues.

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Golog Jigme

Written Statement of Venerable Golog Jigme to the Congressional–Executive Commission on China Hearing

April 15, 2016

“China’s Pervasive Use of Torture”
I would like to first thank the CECC, particularly Chairman Smith and Co-Chairman Rubio, for holding this important hearing today, and for inviting me to participate. As a survivor of torture inflicted by Chinese public security officers, and now as a human rights advocate living in exile in Switzerland, I believe that it is essential for the U.S. and other governments, as well as the UN and other entities, to understand what actually happens inside Chinese detention facilities from someone who has experienced it, and to understand the human rights situation in Tibet today. Not only behind bars, but beyond the prison walls, my Tibetan brothers and sisters are suffering. I urge the CECC and the U.S. Congress to continue to pay attention to the situation inside Tibet. For the future of Tibet, it is very important to break the “lockdown” that the Chinese government has imposed around the Tibetan people. As human beings, we Tibetans have the right to peacefully express our views without fear of being arrested or tortured. We have the right to freedom of movement and to freedom of religion, and China should be held accountable for denying us these basic freedoms, and subjecting us to arbitrary detention and torture when we try to exercise these basic human rights. It is my profound hope that the CECC and Congress will continue to pay attention to the suffering of Tibetans.

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Tibetan Leaders’ statement on Tibetan Uprising Day

March 14, 2016

Following are the statements made by Sikyong Lobsang Sangay and Speaker Penpa Tsering on the occasion of the 57 Tibetan National Uprising Day.

Statement of Sikyong on the 57th Anniversary of Tibetan National Uprising Day
March 10, 2016 – By Staff Writer

Today marks the fifty-seventh anniversary of the Tibetan people’s peaceful uprising of 1959 against People’s Republic of China’s invasion and occupation of Tibet. On this occasion, my colleagues in the Kashag and I would like to pay tribute and pray for all those brave men and women who laid down their lives for the just cause of Tibet. We express our solidarity with those who continue to suffer repression under Chinese rule.

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“U.S. should speak out for Tibet” – Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi & Rep. Jim McGovern

March 10, 2016

Following their historic visit to Tibet as part of a US congressional delegation last November, Democratic Leader Pelosi and Representative Jim McGovern have published an op-ed in USA Today on the 57th anniversary of the 1959 Tibetan National Uprising. Describing their experiences in Tibet, Pelosi and McGovern call on Chinese authorities to engage the Dalai Lama in dialogue as part of what they describe as a “narrow but real” opportunity for the Chinese government to re-evaluate its policy toward Tibet.

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Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, Democratic members hold press conference following historic visit to Tibet and China

Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and Members of the Congressional Delegation who traveled to Tibet and China held a press conference on November 17, 2015 following their historic visit last week. Here is a video recording and transcript of the press conference.

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Nancy Pelosi

Congressman Jim McGovern concludes Congressional delegation visit to China

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Jim McGovern (MA-02), the Co-Chair of the bipartisan Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, issued the following statement after joining Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and other lawmakers on an historic Congressional delegation to Tibet, Beijing and Hong Kong. Click here to view a photo of Congressman McGovern with the delegation in Tibet. […]

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Nancy Pelosi

Statement by Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi on her delegation’s trip to Tibet and China

Joint Base Elmendorf Richardson, Alaska – Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi today issued the following statement after leading a historic Congressional delegation to Tibet, Beijing and Hong Kong: TIBET: “Our delegation was grateful for the opportunity to travel to Lhasa, Tibet to observe, learn and listen about life on the Tibetan plateau. “We engaged in candid […]

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China: Open letter to States for joint action to address worsening crackdown on human rights defenders and lawyers

To: Permanent Representatives of Member States and Observer States of the UN Human Rights Council Your Excellency, We urge your delegation to make statements, both jointly and individually, to address the unprecedented crackdown on human rights defenders and lawyers in China – indeed on Chinese civil society in general – at the forthcoming 30th session […]

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Testimony of Losang Gyatso, Service Chief, Tibetan Service, Voice of America, at the CECC Hearing on China’s religious policy

Public Hearing of Thursday, July 23, 2015 Since problems facing religion, religious institutions, and religious teachers in Tibet is widely known and well documented by this Commission and many other governmental and non-governmental organizations in the US and abroad, I won’t take up too much of your time going over examples. I would like to […]

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Richard Gere

Testimony of Richard Gere Chairman of the Board of Directors International Campaign for Tibet before the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission

July 14, 2015

Co-chairman McGovern and Co-chairman Pitts, and other Members of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, thank you for holding this important hearing today, and for inviting me to speak on the human rights situation in Tibet.

I am here as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the International Campaign for Tibet (or ICT for short), which, since 1988, has been working to promote human rights and democratic freedoms for the people of Tibet. I feel that it’s particularly appropriate for the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission to be holding this hearing today in light of Tom Lantos’ steadfast commitment to Tibet, and his deep relationship with His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

It is with profound sadness that I give these remarks today. Tenzin Delek Rinpoche was one of the most highly respected and revered Tibetan lamas. He was a teacher to tens of thousands of Tibetan and Chinese students. Arrested in 2002, Rinpoche spent the last 13 years of his life serving a life sentence for crimes he did not commit. After being tried in a closed session on charges of “terrorism and inciting separatism” and without due process of law, the worst possible outcome has arrived. Rinpoche has died in prison, while in the custody of the Chinese government. This is a profound tragedy for Tibetans and Buddhists throughout the world. The death of Tenzin Delek Rinpoche is a tragic reminder of the injustices endured by Tibetans for exercising their right to religious freedom, and of the grim state of human rights in Tibet.

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Statement of Lama Kyap Gazan for Tibet 101 Briefing

Before the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, April 21, 2015 Good afternoon. My name is Lama Kyap Gazan, and I would like to thank the Commission for holding this briefing on the important topic of Tibet, and for inviting me to participate. I am a Tibetan American, born and raised in northeastern Tibet, in today’s […]

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Testimony by Matteo Mecacci, President, International Campaign for Tibet

Tibet 101 Briefing
Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission
Tuesday, April 21, 2015

First, I would like to thank the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission and co- chairs Representative McGovern and Representative Pitts for holding this briefing on Tibet. The International Campaign for Tibet greatly appreciates the opportunity to participate in this briefing.

While there are many important issues to address regarding the situation in Tibet, I will touch briefly on several topics and conclude with recommendations that Congress and the Administration can take that would help improve the situation in Tibet. First, the issue of self-immolations and abuses of the criminal justice system; second, restrictions on access to Tibet and the recent White Paper issued by the Chinese government; third, the reincarnation of the Dalai Lama and religious freedom, and finally, a few comments on the need for resumption of dialogue between the Chinese government and Tibetan representatives, and coordinated action on Tibet among democratic countries.

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Reception on Capitol Hill to Honor Mr. Lodi Gyari

The International Campaign for Tibet held a reception in Russell Senate Office Building to honor Mr. Lodi Gyari, who retired as Executive Chairman of our Board, in December 2014. Participants included Democratic Leader Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi, Senator Mark Kirk, Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Congressman Tom Emmer, Representative of H.H. the Dalai Lama, Kaydor Aukatsang; former US […]

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Tibetan Buddhists demonized by PRC Government as posing threat to China’s survival: Matteo Mecacci tells UN Human Rights Council

March 11, 2015

Matteo Mecacci, President of the International Campaign for Tibet, delivered a statement on behalf of the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights at the interactive dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief at the 28th United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva on March 11. He said “The Chinese government adopted a more pervasive approach to “patriotic education”, including measures to micromanage Tibetan Buddhist monastic affairs; “legal education” programs for monks and nuns; and a ban on images of the Dalai Lama.”

While in Geneva, Matteo Mecacci asked for support among the diplomatic community on Tibet related issues. He was accompanied by the ICT Head for UN Advocacy, Kai Mueller.

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The International Campaign for Tibet’s statement on the Shugden demonstration in Washington D.C.

February 4, 2015

The International Campaign for Tibet deplores the planned demonstration in Washington D.C. by some fundamentalist Buddhists belonging to the International Shugden Community that aims at undermining the work of His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

The demonstrators are attempting to confuse the general public by using terms like religious freedom, human rights, etc. to define their issue. The issue is complex and people need a deeper understanding. The Dalai Lama’s website (www.dalailama.com), as also that of the Central Tibetan Administration (www.tibet.net), and the Tibet Houses (www.dalailamaprotesters.info/) cover the historical development of this controversy.

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Lodi Gyari

Personal words of gratitude from Lodi Gyaltsen Gyari

January 2, 2015

As Lodi Gyari retires from the International Campaign for Tibet he has written down his personal reflections on his time in Washington, D.C. and at ICT. We are pleased to share with you an excerpt from the introduction. The full report will be published on ICT’s website early in the next weeks.

It is with humility and gratitude that I present these parting thoughts to the staff, members, supporters and friends of the International Campaign for Tibet (ICT). You have been the backbone of this organization and ICT would not have succeeded without you being a part of this effort. For almost 25 years I worked concurrently at ICT and as Special Envoy for His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and I relied heavily on your support and assistance in discharge of my duties.

Since it’s founding in 1988 the ICT team has devoted itself to supporting the Tibetan people and the vision of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. I am honored to have played a leadership role in this endeavor, from the inception of the organization to the present day. Now as I step down as Executive Chair of ICT and from its Board of Directors, I cannot help but reflect on my work here with a deep sense of satisfaction in our accomplishments.

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Statement by Matteo Mecacci, President of the International Campaign for Tibet on the upcoming meeting between President Obama and President Xi Jinping in Beijing

November 11, 2014

Washington, DC – “While meeting China’s leader Xi Jinping in Beijing President Obama should take the opportunity to raise once again the issue of Tibet.

The situation continues to deteriorate in Tibet, where far too many political prisoners are unjustly detained and mistreated and where self-immolations have vividly reminded us the depth of decades of suffering and oppression. Religious freedom continues to be denied to Tibetans, while China goes on with its campaign aimed at denigrating the Dalai Lama.

The US Congress and the American people continue to be concerned with the situation in Tibet and overwhelmingly support the Dalai Lama and his quest for justice for the Tibetan people. President Obama should reflect this sentiment and voice the same while meeting President Xi Jinping, to make sure that basic human values are not forgotten in the great game of politics and diplomacy.”

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China breaches the rule of law by sentencing Ilham Tohti

September 23, 2014

Washington, DC – With the decision to sentence Uyghur scholar Ilham Tohti to life in prison, Beijing sends an extremist and negative message both to moderate non-Chinese who are trying to find a space within the People’s Republic of China, and to China’s foreign partners, including the United States and the European Union, which have objected to his incarceration.

Ilham Tohti was fully exercising his right to freedom of expression when sharing his views on the marginalization of Uyghurs, including on matters concerning their language and culture.

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