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Tibetan Women's Association celebrates its 25th founding anniversary in exile

September 13, 2009

September 11 2009 -

Dharamshala: Tibetan Women's Association (TWA) one of the earliest formed
non-governmental organization of the Tibetans in exile, celebrated its 25th
founding anniversary in exile on Thursday at the Tibetan Institute of
Performing Arts in Dharamsala.

TWA was first formed in 12 March 1959 in Tibet when thousands of Tibetan
women gathered in Lhasa, the capital city of Tibet to protest against the
armed repression by the Chinese government. It was re-established in exile
under the consideration of His Holiness the Dalai Lama on 10 September 1984.

The president of TWA, Kirti Dolker Lhamo in her opening speech spoke on the
aims and objectives of TWA, of which one of the main objectives she said is
to seek genuine autonomy for Tibet.

Chief Guest Kasur Rinchen Khando, who was the first president of TWA,
underlined the women's role in the preservation of Tibet's rich and unique
language, culture and religion.

She said Tibetan culture doesn't prohibit women to participate in any social
and civil works, which is for the benefit of all the being that is the very
nature of our culture that we have progressed well from the early days of
our coming in exile.  As 50% of the world population are women, so let the
half population of the world contribute in the making of a country.

Working in an NGO or any social work is really not easy, but if you remember
faces of Tibetan people suffering in Tibet and compassion of His Holiness
the Dalai Lama, no one can stop you working for the good, she added.

Mrs Dolma Gyari, deputy speaker of the Tibetan Parliament-in-exile,
encouraged the Tibetan women to take active role in the non-violent struggle
of Tibet, reminding them of the untold suffering of their brethren inside
Tibet under the repressive policies of the Chinese government.

Some of the books published by TWA, including 'Tears of Silence: A report on
China's birth control policy in Tibet', were launched at the function.

At the end, two short movies - "Breaking the Shackles; 50 years of Tibetan
women's struggle" and "Lhamo Tso; Behind the Sea" - were premiered.  The
latter is about indomitable spirit of Lhamo Tso, wife of Dhondup Wangchen,
the director of 'Jigdrel: Leaving fear behind'. Dhondup Wangchen was
arrested for making the film in China and Tibet last year, which documents
the lives of the Tibetan people under China's oppressive rule and the
Beijing Olympics.
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