Dharamsala, August 2 – Exile Tibetan lawmakers have sought UN intervention in securing the release of a jailed Tibetan filmmaker whose film, “leaving fear behind” exposed ‘China’s lies’ in the run up to the Beijing Olympics 2008.
Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile, previously known as the Assembly of the Tibetan People’s Deputies, yesterday wrote a letter to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, appealing her to “intervene to provide immediate medical assistance” to Dhondup Wangchen, who, with assistance from a Tibetan monk named Golog Jigme, documented the Tibetan resentment against Chinese rule and videotaped interviews with Tibetans who sharply criticized the Chinese government policies in Tibet. The tapes of the film were smuggled out of Tibet to Switzerland where Dhondup’s cousin edited them and distributed around the world bringing a much needed boost for the Tibetan campaign against the Beijing Olympics, 2008.
“He is seriously ill and is reportedly being tried today in Siling for allegedly inciting separatism,” the letter from the Tibetan parliament based here said.
Dhondup Wangchen was arrested by Chinese authorities in March 2008.
Charged with “inciting separatism”, Wangchen was recently denied the right to be represented by the lawyer chosen by his family. His wife, living in Dharamsala, recently said she feared her husband who suffers from hepatitis B is not given proper medical care in the prison.
The Tibetan Parliament argued, “Recording people's views on a particular issue does not undermine any Chinese law.”
“We urge you to take this matter with the Chinese authorities immediately and in earnest,” the Tibetan Parliament added.
A copy of the letter was forwarded to Ms Irene Khan, Secretary General, Amnesty International, Geneva.