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"As long as human rights are violated, there can be no foundation for peace. How can peace grow where speaking the truth is itself a crime?"

Letter: Human Rights Session -- Short update from Geneva

October 3, 2010

Chungdak Koren
October 1, 2010

I have attended UN 15th Human Rights Session.
During the session there was a side program and
Mr. Tenzin Norbu, Head of the Environment and
Development Desk under DIIR/CTA Dharamsala , gave
a detailed account of the environmental concerns
on the Tibetan Plateau and how these impacts are
creating problems not only for the six million
local residents but also for the 1.4 billion downstream population.

This UN side event was organised by Society for
Threatened Peoples , an ECOSOC accredited NGO.
Amongst the other 40-50 participants, there were
representatives from Czech Republic, USA,
Switzerland, EU, Belgium and some international NGOs.

The event was moderated by Dr. Charles Graves
(Secretary General of Interfaith International ).
Dr. Graves welcomed the audience and introduced
Tenzin Norbu. After his brief introductory
remarks, Mr. Norbu spoke about the impacts of
climate change on the Tibetan Plateau. During the
45 minute presentation, he stressed mainly these following issues:
* Glacial retreat on the Tibetan Plateau,
* Waters originating from the Tibetan Plateau and the damming issue
* Permafrost degradation/melting on the Tibetan Plateau and its global impacts
* Nomad removal from their ancestral pastoral grounds to concrete blocks.

Later during the Q&A session, Tenzin Norbu
explained further about the ongoing mining
activities on the Tibetan Plateau and its
immediate effect to the local residents citing
examples of recent mining protest by local residents.

The event was concluded by a screening of the
documentary "Meltdown in Tibet" .
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