News and Views on Tibet

From Brussels to Dharamshala, thousands expected to join March 10 protests

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DHARAMSHALA, March 9: Tens of thousands of Tibetans and supporters will be pouring out on the streets the world over on March 10 to observe the 54th Tibetan National Uprising Day.

Since March last year, more than 80 Tibetans have set themselves on fire protesting China’s continued occupation and demanding freedom and the return of the Dalai Lama from exile.

In Brussels, nearly 5000 Tibetans and supporters from all over Europe are expected to take part in a mass solidarity rally to highlight the tragic situation and the self-immolation crisis in Tibet, and seek support for concrete European Union action.

More than 27 Tibetan Community Associations in Europe have for the first come together to organise the March 10 rally.

Speakers at the event, apart from European leaders, include Kyabje Kirti Rinpoche, the exiled abbot of the Kirti Monasteries, Speaker Penpa Tsering, and Kalon Dicki Chhoyang.

The organisers in a release said that through the mass solidarity rally, Tibetans will be appealing the EU and its Member States to urge China to review its failed hard-line policies in Tibet and allow unfettered access to Tibet for the media and international fact-finding delegations.

The EU will also be called upon to instruct its Special Representative for Human Rights to seek access to Tibet and to appoint an EU Special Coordinator for Tibetan Affairs with the primary task of encouraging and facilitating a dialogue between the envoys of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Chinese government.

In Toronto, Canada, around 3000 Tibetans, wearing traditional Tibetan clothes will carry out a mass rally tomorrow morning.

Organisers said the marches will also carry 99 dummy coffins, draped in Tibetan national flags, in honour of Tibetan self-immolators who have passed away.

Canadian members of parliament, Wayne Marston, who is also the Vice Chair Subcommittee of International Human Rights and Peggy Nash, among others, will be addressing the rally.

In London, Tibetans and supporters will be marching from Downing Street to the Chinese Embassy where Tim Loughton MP will address a rally.

The Tibet Freedom March in London will be calling on the Chinese government to end its six-decade brutal regime in Tibet and to respect the rights and freedoms of the Tibetan people. Tibetans and supporters will also be urging David Cameron to speak up for the people of Tibet and make a public statement of concern over the current human rights situation in Tibet.

In the exile headquarters of Dharamshala the official March 10 function will be attended by Sikyong Dr Lobsang Sangay, the elected head of the Tibetan people and Khenpo Sonam Tenphel, Deputy Speaker of the Tibetan Parliament.

Six ministers of the exile Tibetan administration will be attending official Tibetan National Uprising Day functions in four different continents tomorrow.

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