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"We Tibetans are looking for a legitimate and meaningful autonomy, an arrangement that would enable Tibetans to live within the framework of the People’s Republic of China."

How David Miliband betrayed Tibet

January 11, 2010

The Foreign Office's appeasement of Tehran has some strong precedents, says
Christopher Booker
By Christopher Booker
The Telegraph - 09 Jan 2010

Last week, I reported on the strange eagerness of our Foreign and
Commonwealth Office to appease the murderous regime in Tehran. Another
example of the FCO's willingness to kowtow to nasty regimes has been flagged
up in another newspaper, where a columnist researching ahead of a recent
visit to China came across a remarkable statement from the Foreign
Secretary, David Miliband, slipped out on the FCO website on October 29
2008, just before representatives of the Dalai Lama were due to hold talks
in Beijing on the future of Tibet.

Buried in the statement was Britain's recognition for the first time that,
like "all other members of the EU. we regard Tibet as part of the People's
Republic of China". The historic significance of this change was not lost on
Beijing, since until then Britain, with its unique role in Tibet's history,
had for 100 years been very careful not to recognise Chinese sovereignty
over Tibet. The group known as Free Tibet noted that Miliband's concession
gravely weakened the position of the Tibetan envoys without getting anything
in return - commenting how extraordinary it was that Britain should have
"rewarded China in such a way in the very year that China has committed its
worst human rights abuses in Tibet in decades, including killing and

One of the few newspapers in the West to pick up the full implications of
this remarkable change of policy was The New York Times, which headlined a
long piece by an academic expert: "Did Britain sell Tibet?". As the article
observed, China's press had gleefully explained Britain's climb-down as
being due to the West's desire for Chinese help in escaping the financial
crisis. Beijing had responded by dismissing the Tibetan envoys with a
vicious attack on the Dalai Lama, accusing him of wishing to return Tibet to

How clever of Mr Miliband to announce his betrayal not to Parliament, but
via a statement sneaked out on his ministry's website.
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