By Choekyi Lhamo
DHARAMSHALA, Nov. 9: The Tibetan delegation at the COP 27 climate conference in Egypt is putting Tibet into focus by apprising world leaders of the hazardous impact of climate change on the roof of the world. The representatives at the global platform includes representatives from the CTA, rights groups and NGOs. The team has met with the Indian Union leader Bhupender Yadav, President of EU commission Madam Ursula von der Leyen, and Czech Republic’s delegation.
“Our team has been meeting with a number of representatives from all over the world. We are primarily focusing on how Tibet has been on the frontline of climate change, yet have no representation in the global stage where important decisions are made. In addition to not having an official delegation, the indigenous knowledge from inside the region has been strategically sidelined,” spokesperson Yangtso told Phayul.
The core team includes Dr. Lobsang Yangtso from International Tibet Network, SFT activist Khenzom Alling, TPI researcher Dhondup Wangmo and Tenzin Choekyi from Tibet Watch. “This is a crucial time for Tibet and the wider world. Our country is at risk and our struggle to protect our homeland, our environment and our way of life will affect our future and that of a billion people across Asia. But in a cruel twist of fate, occupied Tibet is excluded from the talks,” said the joint statement issued prior to the conference.
“I would say that the scope for protests is impossible this year, unlike Glasgow in 2021, because of Egypt’s own political restrictions. But we have been trying to convey the lack of security for environmentalists and activists under the Chinese government, through the cases of Karma Samdrup, A-Nya Sengdra, among others,” Lobsang Yangtso said. At the Glasgow summit last year, the Tibetan team highlighted the unique two fold existential threat faced by the native Tibetans who on one hand are at the brunt of the climate change but are also receiving no global attention due to China’s forceful presence in the global economy.