News and Views on Tibet

Letter to WTN

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Dear WTN editors,

In January this year, a story was sent out on WTN about two Tibetan teenagers ( a thirteen year old girl and a fifteen year old boy) and their traveling companion being arrested in Nepal for not having travel documents. I had just returned from a pilgrimage to Tibet and Nepal and I found the news of their imprisonment very distressing, especially because I have a thirteen year old daughter and the thought of her in a similar situation of being imprisoned unjustly was more than I could bear. It became my mission to free these children and I decided to pay their fines to get them released. I am a commitee member of a Tibet Support Group in South Africa and contacted the Office of Tibet in Pretoria, South Africa, and they in turn put me in touch with the Office of Tibet in Kathmandu. Through that office, and after having the UNCHR’s involvement ( who suggested that paying the fines might encourage the Nepalese to arrest more Tibetans) it was decided by the Tibetan government in exile that I should be allowed to pay the fines. This was accomplished and the three Tibetans, Samdup, the fifteen year old boy, Yangmo-tso, the thirteen year old girl, and Tashi, a thirty year old male, were released just prior to the Tibetan New Year. The Office of Tibet in Kathmandu has kindly informed me that when the three reach India, Samdup will be joining Sera monastery, Tashi, Gyuto, and Yangmo-tso will be going to a school near Dharamsala.

I wanted to share this good news with you and I want to remain anonymous if you decide to publish this story. Thanks.

Kate Roberts

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