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"Tibetan Freedom Torch Coming to Colorado"

May 25, 2008

Tibetan Association of Colorado
May 23, 2008

BOULDER, Co -- On May 26, Tibetans from Colorado and elsewhere along with Tibet supporters will begin a bicycle ride from Denver to Colorado Springs. The group will be carrying the Tibetan Freedom Torch to the doorsteps of the U.S. Olympic Committee.

The purpose of the ride is to request to the U.S. Olympic Committee that the Beijing Olympic Torch not pass through Tibet and that President Bush not attend the Beijing Olympics unless significant progress is made in negotiations between China and His Holiness The Dalai Lama in settling the Tibet issue.

"Even more bloodshed of innocent Tibetans is bound to happen if the Beijing Olympic torch is allowed into Tibet and the blame will fall squarely on the hands of the IOC. China's actions in Tibet are not commensurate with the Olympics movement. Also, these actions are in clear violation of Olympics Charter 2 and 5," said Tenzin Dhongyal of the Tibetan Association of Colorado. "We would like to see the Olympic ideals remain intact through Beijing in 2008, but the current course of the IOC seems set to make these Olympics go down in history as an endorsement of brutality and oppression."

"Carrying the Olympic Torch through Tibet would be a callous provocation to Tibetans who have already risked their lives in recent days to show the world that China's policies in Tibet cannot be borne,” said Dawn Engle, President of Colorado Friends of Tibet.

The Tibetan Freedom Torch riders will begin on Monday, May 26, at 12pm from the Capitol Building in Denver and will end that day in Monument, Colorado. In the evening, they will lead a discussion about the Tibet situation with members of the All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church in Colorado Springs.

The next day (May 27), the riders will proceed to Colorado Springs. At 10am, there will be a rally at City Hall followed by a walk to the U.S. Olympic Headquarters with an event scheduled there at approximately 12pm. Representatives from the rally will then present a petition to Peter V. Ueberroth (President, U.S. Olympic Committee) requesting that the Beijing Olympic Torch not pass through Tibet.

According to Professor Larry Gerstein, President of the International Tibet Independence Movement, "Peter V. Ueberroth should take a bold step by lobbying the International Olympic Committee to not permit the Beijing Olympic Torch to pass through Tibet. Such an action will demonstrate to China that the U.S. Olympic Committee fully supports the human rights of Tibetans inside of Tibet."

This "Tibetan Freedom Torch"  bike ride is coordinated by the Tibetan Association of Colorado (, Colorado Friends of Tibet (, and the International Tibet Independence Movement ( ).

For more information, contact Tenzin Dhongyal (; 303-601-1843), Dawn Engle (; 303-961-3184), or Larry Gerstein (; 317-506-2249).
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