By Tenzin Dharpo
President Sangay presents Wheel of Dharma souvenir to Speaker Nancy Pelosi at Thank you America event held in Washington DC on 12 February 2019. Photo-OOT DC
DHARAMSHALA, Feb. 13: The exile Tibetan government known officially as the Central Tibetan Administration held the ‘Thank you America’ event in Washington DC’s Capitol hill, the seat of the US political administration.
The event saw Tibetan issue stalwarts such as House Majority Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Congressman Jim McGovern, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, Congresswoman Betty McCollum, Congressman Ben McAdams, Congressman Tom Suozzi among others.
Pelosi said, “Unless we speak out bravely about what is happening inside Tibet, we lose all moral authority,” and added that the administration should “not hesitate to speak out because of commercial interest”. The veteran US politician urged her colleagues that they “have to do more” for Tibet.
The exiled Tibetan leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama also spoke at the event via a video message in which he said that he is grateful on a personal level as well as on a national level for the United States' “sincere and continuous support”.
CTA President Dr. Lobsang Sangay said, “Tibet and the Tibetan people have always found a true friend in the USA,” and urged for the appointment of a Special Coordinator for Tibetan Issues by the Trump Administration, as the position has remained vacant since 2017.
Dr. Sangay’s administration has been the recipient of the largest sum of overt US government funding for the exile Tibetan community through US federal arms and affiliates such as the USAID.
The event was attended by representatives of various NGOs, House and Senate Staffers, advocates of human rights, representatives of Tibetan Associations in the US and Chinese intellectuals and scholars among others on Tuesday.
The ‘thank you America’ initiative follows a long line of similar events by the CTA to express gratitude to international governments and friends of Tibet for their support and assistance over the years since Tibet’s occupation by China in the 1959. The exile Tibetan government is based out of Dharamshala in Northern India.