Chinese delegation leaves Czech parliament over Tibet flag
AFP[Friday, September 26, 2008 00:46]
PRAGUE, September 25 - A Chinese parliamentary delegation walked out of the Czech parliament's lower chamber Thursday after deputies from the Green party unfurled a Tibetan flag, local media reported.

The Chinese delegation from the Chinese parliament's ethnic affairs committee travelled to Prague to meet members of the Czech lower chamber's petitions committee, according to CTK news agency.

"We committed ourselves to point out during the meetings with the Chinese representatives the issue of human rights and the challenge of Tibet," Green party deputy Katerina Jacques told reporters.

The left-wing opposition criticized the action by the Green party, which is part of the governing coalition.

"I condemn this provocative and infantile act," said Communist deputy Pavel Kovacik.

Before the Beijing Olympics in August, China expressed concern over Czech Prime Minster Mirek Topolanek's decision to wear a badge with the colors of Tibet when he announced he would attend the Games but skip the opening ceremony.

China's 57-year rule of Tibet came under the spotlight this year and had been particularly sensitive for the Chinese government in the lead-up to the Olympics.

Pro-Tibetan groups argue that China runs a brutal regime in the region and has suppressed Tibetan culture.

China sent troops into Tibet in 1950 and officially "liberated" it the following year. Tibet's spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, fled into exile in India in 1959 following a failed uprising against Chinese rule.

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