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"I believe that to meet the challenges of our times, human beings will have to develop a greater sense of universal responsibility. It is the foundation for world peace."

WMS participants urged to question China on freedom of press in Tibet

October 13, 2009

October 9, 2009

Dharamsala, October 9 -- As journalists from
various countries gathered in Beijing yesterday
for a three-day World Media Summit the
Association of Tibetan Journalists (ATJ)based
here appealed the participants of the summit to
be "mindful of the lies and propaganda of the Chinese Communist Party."

The group, comprised of reporters and editors of
various Tibetan news media, urged the
participants to raise the issue of media
censorship and violation of freedom of speech and
expression in China and Tibet at the summit
organised by the state run Xinhua news agency.

In its statement issued yesterday, the ATJ said
the summit is a guise to "influence the
international media opinion on China, which has
always undermined the freedom of expression by
crushing the voices that came in its way to
authoritarianism and rule of tyranny."

Tashi Wangchuk, President of ATJ, reiterated his
hope that the Tibetan journalists in exile should
be allowed to visit Tibet for an independent
investigation of the situation there. "If China
is true to its words and claims of stability and
prosperity in Tibet, it should let us visit Tibet
and witness the situation in Tibet for ourselves."

The association made references to Passang Norbu,
a 19 year old Tibetan youth arrested on August 12
this year for watching prohibited Internet
contents and Paljor Norbu, 81 year old Tibetan
sentenced in October last year to seven years in
prison for allegedly printing the banned Tibetan
national flag at his printing press.

"The true face of China’s tolerance to freedom of
expression was flashed across television screens
last year when monks of Lhasa’s Jokhang openly
spoke against the Chinese government and
expressed their loyalty to the exile Tibetan
leader the Dalai Lama before a visiting group of
international journalists in a state monitored tour," the statement said.

The Chinese government, ATJ says, impose strict
restrictions on internet, telephone and cellular
networks making it difficult to verify reports of
arrests and torture. "This is exactly the reason
why there is a considerable time-lapse in the
information we receive and the actual time of the incident.
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