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"On my part, I remain committed to the process of dialogue. It is my firm belief that dialogue and a willingness to look with honesty and clarity at the reality of Tibet can lead us to a viable solution."

Tibetans, Supporters Welcome Google's U-Turn on China Censorship

January 18, 2010

Students for a Free Tibet
January 14, 2010

New York - Tibetans and their supporters worldwide applauded Google's
decision on Tuesday to stop censoring Internet searches in China. This
decision was made in light of recent cyber attacks from China targeting the
Gmail accounts of human rights advocates in the USA, China, and Europe. As
of Tuesday evening, it was reported that websites previously blocked on were accessible, including those displaying images of the Dalai
Lama and information about the March 2008 Uprising in Tibet.

When Google announced in late January 2006 that it was launching,
a version of its popular search engine custom-built to meet the Chinese
government's cyber restrictions, Students for a Free Tibet was at the
forefront of the campaign to oppose this decision. We encouraged anyone who
was outraged and felt betrayed by Google's actions to join an online boycott
of the company's services, and on Valentine's Day more than 12,000 people
"broke-up" with Google (1). 45,000 people sent emails to Google's executives
voicing their concern and protests were held outside Google offices

"Access to information is a critical tool to Tibetans struggling for human
rights and freedom. We hope that Google will uphold its decision not to
censor search results on," said Tenzin Dorjee, Executive Director
of Students for a Free Tibet. "Let this be a wake-up call to other western
corporations operating in China. Colluding with Beijing's repressive
policies does not bring about positive change or greater freedoms for

Tenzin Seldon, a regional coordinator of Students for a Free Tibet, was one
of a dozen people whose Gmail accounts were attacked by Chinese hackers. "My
email account was likely hacked because I am a Tibetan activist. In recent
years, the Tibet movement has successfully publicized the Chinese
government's human rights abuses and unmasked its repressive and colonialist
policies in Tibet. This has made us a target of email viruses and other
cyber-attacks from China," said 20-year old Seldon, whose experience was
referenced in an article published by the New York Times this evening (2).
"But this has only demonstrated the effectiveness of our work for human
rights and freedom in Tibet."

"While deeply disturbing, it is not surprising that Google users who
advocate human rights in China were targeted by these cyber attacks," said
Nathan Dorjee, Students for a Free Tibet's technology advisor. "Tibet
activists have become all too familiar with these attacks in recent years.
During the March 2008 Uprising in Tibet, we experienced a marked increase in
the volume and sophistication of email and other cyber-based attacks
designed to collect information and to impede our work."
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