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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."

Tibetan marchers on indefinite hunger strike against arrest

March 14, 2008

 PunjabNewsline.com
13 March 2008

JAWALAMUKHI:More than hundred Tibetan marchers, who have been stopped
and forcibly taken away by Kangra police to local custody early this
morning, have started indefinite hunger strike in defiance to the
arrest.

The arrested Tibetan marchers said they have launched indefinite
hunger-strike by refusing to eat food offered to them. They sit on
Dharna in front of Agarwal Dharmshala in Jawalamukhi.

The activists have barely walked  minutes before they were arrested
early this morning on the third day of their march. An activist
coordinating the march and who managed to avoid police arrest said
around 100 police have been waiting them at a junction some 3kms from
reaching Dehra, near here short of actually crossing the Kangra
district.

All the 100 core Tibetan marchers of the "Return March to Tibet" have
been arrested and are currently held at  Jawala Mukhi local police
station.The activists were earlier on Monday issued restraint order by
Indian Government stopping them from going beyond the local
administrative district.

However, the activist said, "The police did not resort to any beatings
due to nonviolent nature of the march. They forcibly picked up the
activists when the marchers staged sit-in protest the moment they knew
police was there to arrest them".Some leaders representing the five
organizations initiating the march and several foreigners, who have
been taking solidarity march with the Tibetans from the day one of the
walk, have also been arrested.

Foreign Tibet activists were later released.One hundred Tibetans began
taking a return march to Tibet on March 10, on the 49th anniversary of
Tibetan National Uprising, to challenge China's illegal occupation of
Tibet ahead of the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

The marchers were also seeking unconditional return of the Tibetan
leader, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, to Tibet, among other demands.The
activists planned to take six-month's march to reach Tibet's border
before Olympics would begin in Beijing in August this year.
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