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France calls for EU ‘policy coordination’ on Tibet
Phayul[Friday, November 30, 2012 18:46]
The French Senate
The French Senate
DHARAMSHALA, November 30: France has called for the promotion of policy coordination in the European Union for “coherent actions” to support the Tibetan cause and advancing human rights and freedoms of Tibetans.

The upper house of the French Parliament, Sénat, on Tuesday, November 27, adopted a resolution in view of the deteriorating human rights situation inside Tibet and called on the EU to give priority to Tibet issue within the mandate of its recently appointed EU Special Representative for Human Rights.

The Sénat resolution requested the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy to entrust the Special Representative of the Union for Human Rights Tibet issue as a priority, with a mandate to promote policy coordination on Tibet in the EU.

The resolution called for “coherent actions to advance human rights and freedoms of Tibetans, including their right to preserve their own identity, in its religious, cultural and linguistic.”

It further urged for EU policy coordination in promoting “consistent support for dialogue between the Government of the People’s Republic of China and envoys of the Dalai Lama,” and for “coherent actions supporting Tibetan exile community in its efforts, under the direction of the Central Tibetan Administration, in development of education services and health, guarantee a sustainable livelihood to its members, as well as for the preservation of Tibetan culture in exile, in all its aspects.

The resolution was proposed by the Group for Question on Tibet, an all-party parliamentary support group for Tibet in the French Sénat. It was cleared by the Sénat Foreign Affairs Committee on Thursday, November 22.

The latest calls for policy coordination falls in line with earlier demands made by parliamentarians, Tibet activists, and human rights organisations for the need of a contact group on Tibet.

In September, the global rights group, Human Rights Watch had urged governments concerned about the worsening human rights situation in Tibet to meet on the sidelines of the then UN General Assembly to discuss the formation of a Tibet contact group.

HRW noted that a Tibet contact group could “press the Chinese government to consider resuming meaningful negotiations with Tibetan representatives, and visibly demonstrate heightened international concern about deteriorating conditions.”

The deepening crisis inside Tibet has witnessed large scale anti-China protests and a series of self-immolations that has now seen 89 Tibetans set themselves on fire, since 2009, demanding freedom and the return of the Dalai Lama from exile.

November alone has reported 27 self-immolations and protests by thousands of Tibetans, including by school students in Chabcha and Rebkong
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