News and Views on Tibet

Dissenting voices face violence due to global inaction, says Tibetan activist at Geneva Summit 2024

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Screen grab of Chemi Lhamo delivering speech at the 16th Annual Geneva Summit 2024

By Tenzin Nyidon 

DHARAMSHALA, May 17: Chemi Lhamo, a Tibetan activist and youth leader said that global inaction bolsters efforts to silence dissenting voices by dictatorial regimes like China at the16th Annual Geneva Summit for Human Rights and Democracy on Wednesday.

“We the voices of dissent are subjected to this violence because of the complacency and inaction of the international community. This international community must not, cannot be silent. This silence is not golden when it results in emboldening a regime like the Chinese government. Economic ties as the excuse while you, democratic country actively chooses to shake the bloody hands of the Chinese government also results and means that you have blood on your hands,” she said. 

By shedding light on the plight of Tibetans under the oppressive regime of the Chinese government, she also highlighted the struggles faced by fellow Tibetans, emphasising the pervasive nature of their resistance against cultural erasure and political suppression under the repressive Chinese rule.

Chemi emphasised the power of collective action and the importance of global solidarity in the fight for Tibetan freedom. She invoked the spirit of resistance exhibited by Tibetans inside Tibet and called on allies to join their struggle for justice. She also urged the international community to move beyond silence and take concrete steps to support Tibetans in their quest for freedom, and reiterated the importance of unity and collaboration in confronting authoritarian regimes and expressed hope for a future where Tibetans can live in dignity and self-determination.

Drawing attention on the ongoing campaigns to silence dissent in Tibet, Chemi lamented the imprisonment of individuals like Gyegjom Dorjee for expressing Tibetan identity through music, as well as the disappearance of the Panchen Lama, symbolising the systematic erasure of Tibetan culture. Furthermore, she condemned the environmental devastation caused by Chinese mega-developments, such as the dam in Derge, Kham for displacing indigenous communities and threatening fragile ecosystems. Chemi emphasised the interconnectedness of Tibetan culture with its environment, denouncing the exploitation of Tibetan land for resource extraction. She also highlighted the assault on the Tibetan language, with children forced into colonial boarding schools and separated from their families to assimilate into Chinese culture.

Chemi also delved into the degree of Beijing’s transnational repression by recounting personal instances of harassment, surveillance, and threats against herself and her family, emphasising the lengths to which the Chinese government goes to silence dissent. Despite these challenges, Lhamo called upon the international community to stand in solidarity with Tibetans and act against Chinese oppression. She criticised the complicity of democratic nations that prioritise economic ties over human rights, urging them to recognise their role in perpetuating Tibetan suffering.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *