Dharamsala, July 16 – The World Uighur Congress has denied having sent any letter to His Holiness the Dalai Lama seeking the Tibetan leader’s support to the Uighur cause. A press release issued by the World Uighur Congress said that an e-mail alleged to have been sent by Alim Seytoff, vice president of Uighur American Association and spokesperson of WUC, on July 14 is fake and was not sent by Mr. Seytoff. The fake e-mail calls on Tibetans to participate in worldwide protests in solidarity with Uighurs in East Turkestan. Tenzin Takhla, spokesperson for Office of His Holiness the Dalai Lama told reporters that no such letter or email was received.
The WUC said that the email is not associated with UAA or WUC, contains numerous misspellings, and lists an incorrect title for Mr. Seytoff.
A number of news agencies around the world have published reports citing the fake email. Chinese media have even cited "experts" who described both overseas Uighur organizations and the Tibetan Government-in-exile as separatist organizations.
“UAA and WUC believe these fake e-mails and viruses are being sent out by Chinese hackers in an attempt to hinder Uighur human rights advocacy, damage the reputation of Uighur human rights activists and confuse readers as to what message is being sent by UAA and WUC,” the press release said.
The press release further said that the situation faced by the Uighur and Tibetan people under the harsh policies of the Chinese government shares many similarities, including religious repression, cultural eradication, imprisonment, and widespread torture. “However, just as the Tibetan government-in-exile is not a separatist organization, UAA and WUC are not separatist organizations, and both UAA and WUC seek self-determination and greater human rights for the people of East Turkestan.”
Many supporters of Tibet have expressed their worry on the Internet at the Chinese government’s attempt to bundle together the struggles of Uighurs and Tibetans to discredit both as terrorist outfits thus justifying its violent crackdown.