Italian Government confirms the right of Tibetan refugees to travel to Italy

ICT joined with the Tibetan Community in Italy, the Italy Tibet Association, and the Italian Buddhist Union to reverse some decisions of the Italian authorities to deny visas to Tibetan refugees from India traveling to Italy. We will monitor the correct application of standards and against any inaccurate interpretations such as there have been in these last two months.

Following is the text of the press release

In response to the parliamentary question submitted by Senator Francesco Palermo on the denial of visas for Italy to Tibetan refugees residing in India, the government today, Wednesday, 2 August, reiterates the existence of legislation guaranteeing the right of Tibetan refugees to obtain a visa for Italy.

The Government only partially admitted that deeply alarming and inaccurate information had been published by the Italian consulates in India considering documents held by Tibetan refugees unsuitable for traveling to Italy.

The Government, in the meeting between Undersecretary Della Vedova Benedetto and the delegation composed by Claudio Cardelli, Matteo Mecacci, Giorgio Raspa, Chodup Tsering, assured the restoration of the practice of granting the visa following the procedures so far applied and which never generated any particular problems.

The undersecretary, during the meeting, categorically excluded that there had been any kind of pressure from the People’s Republic of China.

We take note of the reasons presented by the government to justify how the episode took place and we are satisfied of the positive outcome for Tibetans in India who will now be able to apply for a visa for our country more safely.

For these reasons, we will continue to monitor the situation to ensure that existing legislation, which is already cumbersome for Tibetan refugees, will be properly enforced, and that the restrictive interpretations of the rules, which manifested clearly with the publication on the Italian Consulate website in Mumbai on May 18 (which in the meantime has been removed), have only been a bad episode that won’t be repeated.

Comunità Tibetana in Italia
Prof. Chodup Tchiring Lama

Associazione Italia-Tibet
Dott. Claudio Cardelli

International Campaign For Tibet
Dott. Matteo Mecacci

Unione Buddhista Italiana
Avv. Giorgio Raspa

Milano August, 3, 2017

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