Document No. 5
Official Resolution of anguish and solidarity
Since the People’s Republic of China deployed its military to the task of carrying out an armed invasion of Tibet in about the year 1949. This tragic usurpation compelled the supreme leader of Tibet, His Holiness the Dalai Lama and nearly a hundred thousand other Tibetan people to escape homeland Tibet to a situation of living in exile. It has been more than seventy years since the occupation took place. During that period of the Chinese invasion and occupation rule, more than one million Tibetan people have been killed or driven to death well before the end of their natural life. Thousands of monasteries have been demolished. Including with the ravaging exploitation of the territory’s rich reserves of mineral resources, unimaginable levels of destruction, looting, and blatant stealing have been carried out both as regards the territory of Tibet and its natural and human resources. But that was not all. China has been relentless throughout that period in implementing egregious policies of great deviousness that have been designed to obliterate the Tibetan people’s religious, cultural, linguistic, and other kinds of Tibetan heritage which are the symbolic essence of our ethnic identity. This policy extended even to then blatant deprivation of the Tibetan people, the rightful owners of the land, of the most basic of their freedoms and human rights. The brutality of the Chinese government’s policies in Tibet have been nothing short of what amounted to subjecting the Tibetan people to enduring what amounted to the realm of hell being transferred to this world of the living, marked by persecution and torture without any sort of limitation. All this is taking place in the context of China’s ultimate plan to transform this historically defined land of the Tibetan people into one that would be indistinguishable as a Chinese one. This has remained an enduring ongoing policy of such seriousness of gravity that it was impossible for the people of Tibet to remain silent without expressing their protests, whatever the brutality of the reprisal from the Chinese government might be. The ever-deteriorating situation compelled the people of Tibet to continue these peaceful protests with grim, unbroken continuity, generation after generation.
In particular, in the 1980s, and especially in the year 2008, numerous large-scale peaceful protests were carried out in all parts of the three traditional provinces of Tibet, particularly, in Lhasa, the capital city of Tibet. China responded to these protests by unleashing its armed forces on the Tibetan people to carry out merciless crackdowns marked by the absence of the tiniest bit of restraint. Thousands of Tibetan people, irrespective of monks, nuns, and laypeople, lost their lives to the brutal weapons of killing and destruction employed by the Chinese armed forces. Many more Tibetan people were beaten, tortured, detained, or arrested, and then put in prison. This remains an ongoing situation to this day. But that is not all. Finding themselves trapped in the impossible situation of having to endure the unendurable routine of utmost brutal persecution by the communist party government of China, the Tibetan people began giving vent to their feeling of utter haplessness and despair, marked by the absence of any other possible alternative recourse, by resorting to a desperate new phase of protest actions. And so, since the year 2009, until the 26th of November in 2019, when a 24-year-old Tibetan man named Yonten self-immolated and died in the Afternoon near Meruma Township in Domey Ngaba creating yet another great sadness to everyone, a total of 154 Tibetan men and women have self-immolated in protest against the Chinese government’s policy towards Tibet. Nevertheless, the leadership of the communist Chinese government has never given any thought towards even considering finding a solution to the Sino-Tibetan dispute. On the contrary, it has taken recourse to nothing other than subterfuge and deception to keep telling lies to both the people of China and the people in the international community to throw a veil over the true situation in Tibet. Not only that, it has routinely touted a false narrative to tell a distorted story about Tibet being historically part of China since ancient times.
It does not bear mentioning that the government of China has, even to this day, no intention whatsoever to make a positive turn to its long-held hardline policy on the issue of Tibet. This is clear from its continuing deprivation of the Tibetan people of their basic human rights, including the right to freedom of speech and expression. It continues to throw to the wind and trample on the Tibetan people’s right to freedom of religious belief and practice. It continues to implement on the Tibetan people a policy of various types of ethnic discrimination. And it speaks about being resolute and thorough in opposing what it calls separatist activities of the Tibetan people. In total violation of the country’s own laws, the leadership of the communist Chinese government has carried out a series of campaign actions under which Tibetan people have been subjected to arbitrary detention and imprisonment. For example, numerous Tibetan people who had posted their opinions on their online social media pages, or who had merely shared pictures of His Holiness the Dalai Lama online over such forums have been criminally charged and persecuted on various pretexts after being arrested. From the major Tibetan Buddhist religious study centre of Yachen Gar, more than 7000 monks and nuns were expelled. Likewise, from Serta Larung Gar, another major Tibetan Buddhist religious study centre, thousands of student monks and nuns were previously expelled and limits set on the number of new enrolments that could be made. Likewise, a number of monks of Wonpo Monastery located in Dza Wonpo Town were arrested and jailed on suspicion that they were involved in scattering leaflets calling for the restoration of Tibet’s independence. A-nya Sengdra, a Tibetan man who had investigated and exposed official corruption, was arrested and jailed without any legally sustainable evidence of any wrongdoing. Also, prominent Tibetan businessman Dorje Tashi, held in detention since 2008, was also arrested and imprisoned without any criminal procedural and judicial fairness. These recent cases show that China has still not relented on its policy of repression and persecution of the Tibetan people.
In the month of January this year, the regional people’s congress of the so-called Tibet Autonomous Region adopted a law called “Regulations to Establish a Model Area for National Unity and Progress in the Tibet Autonomous Region”. The new law posed a real danger of the language and script, virtuous habits, and so on of the ethnic minority people being dissolved, to be replaced by ethnic Chinese way of life. In addition, China has been deploying modern, artificial intelligence technology to target, tighten restrictions and impose ever more control measures on the ethnic minority peoples – especially Tibetan people – on religious figures, and on the religious practices of the general masses. The government of China has confiscated the passports of the Tibetan people living in their homeland and has also curtailed the issuance of visa to the Tibetan people living abroad. In particular, during the current year of 2020, the government of China greatly increased the deployment of police forces in places throughout the territory of Tibet for the purpose of enhancing surveillance over the Tibetan people. In fact, the government of China took measures to strengthen the monitoring of the movement, stoppage, and activities of people throughout the People’s Republic of China by means of the deployment of artificial intelligence technology and this has been obvious to everyone.
A few months back, when the novel coronavirus pandemic broke out in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, the leadership of the government of the communist party of China threatened a concerned medical doctor for sounding the alarm to fellow-doctors, reprimanding him for engaging in what the authorities called “spreading fake information on the internet”. As a result, the pandemic’s infection spread rapidly from day to day not only within China but also to a large number of people in other countries, a development that continues to this day. What this extremely sad and globally alarming development shows is that the government of China hiding facts and throwing a veil over the true situation, including the use of brutal violence, is an all too routine practice and the latest development is only an exemplar of it.
Under the incomparable leadership of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, the Central Tibetan Administration has gained strength and stability through development carried out over the last more than 60 years of our living in exile. As a result, the Central Tibetan Administration has been able to render all-round yeoman’s service to the Tibetan people under His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s leadership, including in terms of providing education and in the fields of religion and culture. A mutually beneficial approach of a middle way policy for achieving a just solution to the issue of Tibet was worked out. His Holiness is greatly admired all across the world and as a result, he has been honoured with hundreds of globally prominent awards and recognitions. Apart from this, India, both centrally and at the state level, has especially been most generous in facilitating and providing resources of every kind to the Tibetan people. The human rights bodies of the United Nations, as well as governments and parliaments of numerous countries and intergovernmental bodies such as the European Union, The United States of America, individual European countries, and Japan, encompassing all the continents of this world, have introduced significant numbers of draft legislative measures and adopted laws and resolutions related to the issue of Tibet and extended financial support. Some of them have brought out annual reports concerned with the situation of human rights and freedom of religious belief in Tibet as well as with regard to the state of linguistic freedom of the Tibetan people under Chinese occupation rule. Numerous meetings and conferences were held with regard to the issue of Tibet, especially the series of World Parliamentarians’ Convention on Tibet, the International Tibet Support Groups Meetings and meetings of the Indian Support Groups for Tibetan Cause. These meetings have been marked by enthusiastic organizers, generous facility providers, and large-scale attendances and participation. The resolutions adopted at these meetings and conferences continue to be implemented. Such a vibrant state of affairs shows with utmost clarity that we the Tibetan people living in exile are not isolated and friendless in the outside world as claimed by the government of China.
In particular, just recently, the House of Representatives of the United States Congress adopted a law in 2019, titled as Tibetan Policy and Support Act 2019. Likewise, during the 68th annual National Prayer Breakfast held in the Washington Hilton in Washington, DC, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi specifically spoke on the issue of Tibet. And the international human rights organization Human Rights Watch publicized a list of about 80 Tibetan people who had been arrested and jailed by the Chinese government in the year 2008, and the group continues to pay close attention to their situation and wellbeing. With actions like these, the organization has continued to extend support for these Tibetan people and issued ardent appeals to the international community on their plight. Nevertheless, the response of the government of China to the international community has continuously been nothing but a repetition of its lies and falsehood. What all this boils down to is the fact that there is not an iota of change in the hardline policy of the government of China on the issue of Tibet. As a result, the true situation in Tibet today cannot be more critical. Hence, it is seen to be pertinent to adopt a resolution of anguish and solidarity at this session of the Tibetan Parliament in Exile.
- From the 3rd of October in 2019, a three-day conference of the Third Special General Meeting of Tibetan people called under the provisions of Article 59 of the Charter of the Tibetans in Exile was held. Likewise, from the 3rd of November in 2019, a three-day conference of the 8th International Tibet Support Groups Meeting was held. And from the 27th of November in 2019, a three-day session of the 14th Tibetan Religious Conference was held. The consensus reached at these special meetings was for the participants to offer heartfelt prayers to His Holiness the Dalai Lama to continue to reincarnate. The meetings made it clear that the authority for making decisions concerning the way and the method in which the reincarnation shall appear rested solely in His Holiness the Dalai Lama himself and that none of the government or others will have such authority. The Tibetan Parliament in Exile shall be resolute in working to carry forward the provisions of these resolutions.
- As stated in resolutions of anguish and solidarity adopted during its successive sessions, the Tibetan Parliament in Exile calls for a process for the immediate start of Sino-Tibetan dialogue on the basis of the mutually beneficial middle-way policy by fully taking into consideration the demands and aspirations voiced by the Tibetan people who have carried out peaceful protests, including by means of self-immolation. The government of China should precede this move by abandoning the ongoing actions and policies pursued by it which bring to utter ruin to the territory of Tibet and its rich contents of human, cultural, and natural resources.
- The Tibetan Parliament in Exile wishes to express grief for and solidarity with the victims of the very dangerous, highly infectious novel coronavirus global pandemic which originated in the Chinese city of Wuhan and which later spread with particular severity in some Tibetan areas such as Tawu and which now continues to infect people everywhere. We appeal to the Tibetan people both in Tibet and in exile everywhere to exercise due caution and take particular care of their health. We also wish to make it clear to the government of China that it is obvious to everyone that issuing threats and imposing forced incarceration alone will not enable people to escape from the ravaging global pandemic. We emphatically call on the government of China to provide practical beneficial medical treatment to the patients and work towards bringing the runway pandemic infections to an end.
- The Tibetan Parliament in Exile wishes to express gratitude to all those in the international community who have extended support on the issue of Tibet over the years. We also urge them to continue with renewed vigour and lending of support on the issue of Tibet with an even greater amount of resolve so that there may be still greater understanding in greater detail the Chinese government’s violent repression and policy of use of brutal force in Tibet. These should form part of their efforts directed at ensuring a true appreciation of the real situation of the Tibetan people living under the Chinese occupation rule. In particular, the Tibetan Parliament in Exile ardently appeals to the United Nations Human Rights Commissioner at the United Nations Human Rights Council to make it a point to visit Tibet as well to investigate the true state of the human rights situation and other matters there during the course of her planned upcoming visit to China.
- The boundless deeds and accomplishments of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, the incomparable leader of the Tibetan people, directed at the exalted purpose of benefiting all sentient beings have prevailed in all the three world realms ever since His Holiness the Dalai Lama assumed the temporal and spiritual leadership of the Tibetan nation at the age of 16 and the Tibetan Parliament in Exile wishes to express limitless gratitude to Him for his kindness and generosity. The Tibetan Parliament in Exile vows that all the people belonging to the Snowland of Tibet who has derived their sustenance and upbringing under the kindness and generosity of His Holiness the Dalai Lama will shoulder their bounden duty towards the Tibetan nation’s religious, political and ethnic wellbeing in whatever way they could by pooling their contributions with an unwavering sense of determination for carrying forward the greater good of general Tibetan concerns. And so be it adopted accordingly with the unanimous approval of the Tibetan Parliament in Exile on the 17th day of March in 2020.
The above resolution was passed with unanimous approval by the 16th Tibetan Parliament in Exile at its 9th session on the 17th of March in 2020.
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* In case of any discrepancy between this English translation and its Tibetan original, the latter should be considered authoritative and final for all purposes.