Tag Archives | US Congress

Congressional committee acts to reinstate funding for Tibet programs for FY 2018

July 20, 2017

A key Congressional committee has acted to reinstate funding for a number of programs that support Tibetan communities in Tibet and Tibetan refugees in South Asia in the 2018 Fiscal Year State Department budget.

On July 19, 2017, the House Appropriations Committee approved its version of the Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 State-Foreign Operations Appropriations bill.

In the President’s proposed budget for FY2018, the Tibetan programs were generally reduced and in one case, eliminated.

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ICT Chairman Richard Gere visits Washington, D.C. to engage Members of Congress on Tibet; Attends observation of the Dalai Lama’s birthday on Capitol Hill

June 30, 2017

International Campaign for Tibet Board Chairman Richard Gere came down to Washington, D.C. for the third time this year to continue and deepen ICT’s engagement with Members of Congress on initiatives for Tibet, as well as to participate in a celebration of the Dalai Lama’s 82nd birthday on Capitol Hill.

During this visit, which took place on June 27 and 28, 2017, Gere took the opportunity to brief the Members on the situation in Tibet, on the vision and efforts of the Dalai Lama to solve the Tibetan issue, and on the importance of continued United States support to the Tibetan people.

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Representatives Jim McGovern and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen Draw Attention to Tibet in U.S. House of Representatives

May 2, 2017

Representatives Jim McGovern (Democrat from Massachusetts) and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (Republican from Florida) spoke today in the House of Representatives to draw attention to the situation inside Tibet. Participating in the General Speeches period as the House began its session, they displayed a large portrait of the Dalai Lama, spoke about their support for the aspirations of the Tibetan people, the respect they have for the Dalai Lama, and about their work in the United States proactively promoting initiatives on Tibet.

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Senators Cardin and Rubio call on Secretary Tillerson to raise Tibet during Xi Jinping’s visit

April 5, 2017

U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, and Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Chairman of Senate Foreign Relations subcommittee on democracy, human rights, and global women’s issues, have written to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, in connection with the upcoming meeting between President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jingping, calling on the US side, among others, to “urge China to do more to improve the cultural and spiritual plight of Tibetans, not just their economic status.”

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On Eve of Chinese President’s US visit, Congressional Bicameral Bill Calls for Americans to Receive the Same Access to Tibet that Chinese Citizens Enjoy in the United States

McGovern, Hultgren, Rubio, Baldwin introduce Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act in both House and Senate of the US Congress to lift restrictions on US citizens’ access to Tibet

April 4, 2017

On the eve of the first summit between President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping, a bipartisan legislation to promote access by Americans to Tibetan areas, which is routinely denied by Chinese authorities, has been introduced by Senator Rubio (R-FL) and Baldwin (D-WI) in the Senate and by Congressmen McGovern (D-MI) and Hultgren (R-WI) in the House of Representatives of the United States Congress on April 4, 2017.

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Jim McGovern

Members of Congress Urge President Obama to formulate new, creative strategies to encourage meaningful dialogue and protect Tibetan rights

August 19, 2016

Seventy-two Members of Congress of the United States have urged President Barack Obama to formulate “new, creative strategies to encourage meaningful dialogue, protect Tibetan rights, and preserve their unique cultural, religious and linguistic identity” during the remaining months of his term in office.

This appeal was contained in a letter that was initiated by Congressman Jim McGovern. The letter also urges the Administration to take proactive steps to support the Dalai Lama and Tibet. Following is the press statement and text of the letter, along with the names of the Members of Congress who signed it.

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Representative Jim McGovern

Rep. Jim McGovern Led a Special Order on Tibet in the U.S. House of Representatives to Coincide with His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s Visit to Washington

June 23, 2016

On the evening of June 13, 2016, Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA) led a Special Order on Tibet on the floor of the House of Representatives, which was scheduled to coincide with His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s arrival in Washington, D.C. A Special Order is a procedure that enables a Member of the House to speak on any topic they wish, for a specified period of time, after all legislative business is concluded for the day.

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US Senate Applauds Dalai Lama’s promotion of nonviolence, interfaith dialogue, democracy

The United States Senate, on July 8, 2015, unanimously passed a resolution https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/senate-resolution/200 wishing His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama a happy 80th birthday on July 6, 2015, and recognizing the outstanding contributions His Holiness has made to the promotion of nonviolence, human rights, interfaith dialogue, environmental awareness, and democracy. The bipartisan resolution, S. Res […]

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US Congressional Representatives speak out in support of Tibet: ‘It deserves our unanimous support’

July 9, 2015

On July 8 a group of Congressmen in the House of Representatives urged their colleagues to pass bipartisan resolution H. Res. 337, which denounces human rights violations in Tibet and calls for dialogue without preconditions between China and the Dalai Lama and its representatives leading to a negotiated settlement for the people of Tibet. It was agreed to without objections after Representatives Chris Smith (R), Eliot Engel (D), Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, Jim McGovern (D) and Dana Rohrabacher (R) took to the floor to speak in favor of the resolution.

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US House of Representatives adopts Resolution criticizing China’s policy in Tibet and honoring the Dalai Lama

July 8, 2015

The United States House of Representatives today held a debate on the situation in Tibet discussing Resolution 337 “Calling for substantive dialogue, without preconditions, in order to address Tibetan grievances and secure a negotiated agreement for the Tibetan people.” The Resolution was introduced on June 24, 2015 by Congressmen Eliot Engels, Matt Salmon, Jim McGovern and Joe Pitts and had 29 original cosponsors.

Several Members of Congress spoke eloquently on the House floor today about the misguided policies of the Chinese Government in Tibet and called on China to resume dialogue with Tibetans, without preconditions.

Members of Congress Chris Smith (R), Eliot Engel (D), Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, Congressman McGovern (D) and Dana Rohabacher (R), all spoke in support of the Resolution, which was agreed without objections.

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Resolution introduced in US House of Representatives challenging China’s policies in Tibet and honoring Dalai Lama’s contributions on his 80th birthday

June 25, 2015

As the Dalai Lama celebrates his 80th birthday, a resolution praising his efforts to advance greater understanding, tolerance, harmony and respect among religious faiths has been introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Rep. Eliot L. Engel (NY), the top Democrat on the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, and Rep. Matt Salmon (AZ), Chairman of the Asia Pacific Subcommittee, along with co-Chairmen of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, Representatives Joseph Pitts (PA) and James McGovern (MA).
In total, the resolution has 28 original co-sponsors.

In a press release, Rep. Engel said “Throughout his life, His Holiness, the 14th Dalai Lama, has championed greater understanding, harmony, and respect among all religious faiths. As the spiritual and temporal leader of the Tibetan people, he has been a model for all of us on the importance of preserving the cultural, religious, historical, and linguistic heritage—not just for the Tibetan people but for all people. His Holiness has done outstanding work to safeguard the environment in the Tibetan plateau, to promote democracy among the Tibetan people, and to champion non-violent conflict resolution.” Rep. Engel further stated: “This resolution reaffirms the unwavering friendship between the Tibetan people and the United States, and I’m proud to offer it along with Representatives Salmon, Pitts and McGovern.” Rep Engel said.

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US Senate seal

Resolution Honoring His Holiness the Dalai Lama on 80th Birthday introduced in US Senate

June 11, 2015

We are thrilled to share that Senator Feinstein just introduced a resolution honoring His Holiness the Dalai Lama on his 80th Birthday. She was joined by longtime supporters of His Holiness and Tibet Senators Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), as original cosponsors. We wish to thank them all for standing with the Tibetan people on this auspicious occasion.

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Seventh Tibet Lobby Day held in Washington, D.C.

March 4, 2015

The seventh annual Tibet Lobby Day was held in Washington, D.C. from March 2 to 3, 2015. Around 100 Tibetan-Americans and friends of Tibet converged from 15 different states to urge the U.S. Congress to support concrete actions to solve the Tibet crisis and support Tibetans in their effort to protect their culture, religion and identity.

“As a former Tibetan political prisoner who benefited from international support during my imprisonment by the Chinese authorities, the Tibet Lobby Day provided me, as a Tibetan American now, with the opportunity to do something concrete for the Tibetan people,” said Ngawang Sangdrol from Massachusetts, who has been a regular participant of the Tibet Lobby Day. “From my own experience, I can vouch for the fact that any such actions taken internationally do positively impact the Tibetans in Tibet,” Sangdrol added.

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ICT welcomes introduction of the Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act to the US Congress by Representatives McGovern and Pitts

February 27, 2015

On February 26, 2015 Members of Congress re-introduced a bipartisan legislation to promote travel by Americans to Tibetan areas where access is routinely denied by Chinese authorities.

“The Bill conveys a clear message to the Chinese leadership that if they don’t allow American citizens into Tibet, then Chinese officials with oversight on Tibet should not be allowed into the United States,” said Matteo Mecacci, President of the International Campaign for Tibet. “For decades, restricted access to Tibet for independent observers, journalists and diplomats has raised serious concerns as it has allowed the Chinese government to oppress Tibetans without accountability,” added Mecacci.

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Congress funds again Tibet programs in 2014 spending bill

January 15, 2014

The U.S. Congress continued its steady support for Tibet through the provision of approximately $19 million for Tibet programs through the Consolidated Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2014. The House of Representatives is expected to vote on the bill on January 15, and the Senate soon thereafter.

“The United States Congress has once again given strong support to the cause of Tibet,” said Todd Stein, Director of Government Relations at the International Campaign for Tibet. “While these programs are but a minuscule part of the overall foreign aid budget, this investment yields big dividends for Tibetans and their efforts to preserve their culture and identity.”

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Tibetan immigration measures moves to next stage in U.S. Congress

July 27, 2013

With the United States Senate approving the comprehensive immigration legislation on June 2X, 2013, the effort to enable a few thousand Tibetans to immigrate here has moved to the next stage in the process. The legislation includes a provision to extend immigrant visas to a limited number of displaced Tibetan in India and Nepal.

“Senate passage is a critical step in the effort to enact a comprehensive immigration bill,” said Todd Stein, Director of Government Relations at the International Campaign for Tibet. “While the Tibet measure is just one tiny provision in a huge bill, it can provide big benefits for Tibetan communities in South Asia and America, as well as advance U.S. foreign policy goals.”

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Bhuchung Tsering

Congressional panel calls for “urgent” and “bold” action on Tibet on eve of Obama-Xi summit

June 6, 2013

ICT’s Bhuchung Tsering testifies with four recommendations to President Obama

At a June 5 hearing on “human rights in Tibet” on the eve of the summit between Presidents Barack Obama and Xi Jinping, leaders of Congress’ Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission called on the Obama Administration to give new impetus to actions that will improve conditions in Tibet.

Commission Co-Chair Frank Wolf (R-VA) said we “have to do something bold and different” on Tibet, called for the next Special Coordinator for Tibetan Issues to “bring a freshness to the issue,” and labeled the situation inside Tibet as one of “cultural genocide.” He also urged the State Department to consult the Tibetan community on who they think would be appropriate for the post of the Special Coordinator for Tibetan Issue.

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Bhuchung Tsering

Testimony of Bhuchung K. Tsering at the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission hearing on Tibet

Washington, DC
June 5, 2013

I thank the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission for this opportunity to testify today. I would like to address the topic of this hearing in the context of the current critical situation in Tibet.

This hearing is timely as President Barack Obama is preparing to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping in California. Therefore, I would like to highlight the situation in Tibet and what the Obama Administration should do about it, including during the upcoming summit.

In his first speech after becoming the new head of the Chinese Communist Party on November 15, 2012, Xi Jinping said, “In the new situation, our Party faces many severe challenges.” In the same speech, Xi also said, “…Chinese people have opened up a good and beautiful home where all ethnic groups live in harmony and fostered an excellent culture that never fades.”

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