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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."

Twelve Suggestions for Dealing with the Tibetan Situation by Some Chinese Intellectuals

March 23, 2008

Received by Email

Beijing, March 22, 2008

1. At present the one-sided propaganda of the official Chinese media is
having the effect of stirring up inter-ethnic animosity and aggravating
an already tense situation. This is extremely detrimental to the
long-term goal of safeguarding national unity. We call for such
propaganda to be stopped.

2. We support the Dalai Lama’s appeal for peace, and hope that the
ethnic conflict can be dealt with according to the principles of
goodwill, peace, and non-violence. We condemn any violent act against
innocent people, strongly urge the Chinese government to stop the
violent suppression, and appeal to the Tibetan people likewise not to
engage in violent activities.

3. The Chinese government claims that “there is sufficient evidence to
prove this incident was organized, premeditated, and meticulously
orchestrated by the Dalai clique." We hope that the government will show
proof of this. In order to change the international community’s negative
view and distrustful attitude, we also suggest that the government
invite the United Nation’s Commission on Human Rights to carry out an
independent investigation of the evidence, the course of the incident,
the number of casualties, etc.

4. In our opinion, such Cultural-Revolution-like language as “the Dalai
Lama is a jackal in Buddhist monk’s robes and an evil spirit with a
human face and the heart of a beast ” used by the Chinese Communist
Party leadership in the Tibet Autonomous Region is of no help in easing
the situation, nor is it beneficial to the Chinese government’s image.
As the Chinese government is committed to integrating into the
international community, we maintain that it should display a style of
governing that conforms to the standards of modern civilization.

5.                  We note that on the very day when the violence
erupted in Lhasa (March 14), the leaders of the Tibet Autonomous Region
declared that “there is sufficient evidence to prove this incident was
organized, premeditated, and meticulously orchestrated by the Dalai
clique.” This shows that the authorities in Tibet knew in advance that
the riot would occur, yet did nothing effective to prevent the incident
from happening or escalating. If there was a dereliction of duty, a
serious investigation must be carried out to determine this and deal
with it accordingly.

6.                  If in the end it cannot be proved that this was an
organized, premeditated, and meticulously orchestrated event but was
instead a “popular revolt” triggered by events, then the authorities
should pursue those responsible for inciting the popular revolt and
concocting false information to deceive the Central Government and the
people; they should also seriously reflect on what can be learned from
this event so as to avoid taking the same course in the future.

7.                  We strongly demand that the authorities not subject
every Tibetan to political investigation or revenge. The trials of those
who have been arrested must be carried out according to judicial
procedures that are open, just, and transparent so as to ensure that all
parties are satisfied.

8.                  We urge the Chinese government to allow credible
national and international media to go into Tibetan areas to conduct
independent interviews and news reports. In our view, the current news
blockade cannot gain credit with the Chinese people or the international
community, and is harmful to the credibility of the Chinese government.
If the government grasps the true situation, it need not fear
challenges. Only by adopting an open attitude can we turn around the
international community’s distrust of our government.

9.                  We appeal to the Chinese people and overseas Chinese
to be calm and tolerant, and to reflect deeply on what is happening.
Adopting a posture of aggressive nationalism will only invite antipathy
from the international community and harm China’s international image.

10.               The disturbances in Tibet in the 1980s were limited to
Lhasa, whereas this time they have spread to many Tibetan areas. This
deterioration indicates that there are serious mistakes in the work that
has been done with regard to Tibet. The relevant government departments
must conscientiously reflect upon this matter, examine their failures,
and fundamentally change the failed nationality policies.

11.               In order to prevent similar incidents from happening
in future, the government must abide by the freedom of religious belief
and the freedom of speech explicitly enshrined in the Chinese
Constitution, thereby allowing the Tibetan people fully to express their
grievances and hopes, and permitting citizens of all nationalities
freely to criticize and make suggestions regarding the government’s
nationality policies.

12.              We hold that we must eliminate animosity and bring
about national reconciliation, not continue to increase divisions
between nationalities. A country that wishes to avoid the partition of
its territory must first avoid divisions among its nationalities.
Therefore, we appeal to the leaders of our country to hold direct
dialogue with the Dalai Lama. We hope that the Chinese and Tibetan
people will do away with the misunderstandings between them, develop
their interactions with each other, and achieve unity. Government
departments as much as popular organizations and religious figures
should make great efforts toward this goal.


Signatures:

Wang Lixiong (Beijing, Writer)
Liu Xiaobo (Beijing, Freelance Writer)
Zhang Zuhua (Beijing, scholar of constitutionalism)
Sha Yexin (Shanghai, writer, Chinese Muslim)
Yu Haocheng (Beijing, jurist)
Ding Zilin (Beijing, professor)
Jiang peikun (Beijing, professor)
Yu Jie (Beijing, writer)
Sun Wenguang (Shangdong, professor)
Ran Yunfei (Sichuan, editor, Tujia nationality)
Pu Zhiqiang (Beijing, lawyer)
Teng Biao (Beijing, Layer and scholar)
Liao Yiwu ()Sichuan, writer)
Wang Qisheng (Beijing, scholar)
Zhang Xianling (Beijing, engineer)
Xu Jue (Beijing, research fellow)
Li Jun (Gansu, photographer)
Gao Yu (Beijing, journalist)
Wang Debang (Beijing, freelance writer)
Zhao Dagong (Shenzhen, freelance writer)
Jiang Danwen (Shanghai, writer)
Liu Yi (Gansu, painter)
Xu Hui (Beijing, writer)
Wang Tiancheng (Beijing, scholar)
Wen kejian (Hangzhou, freelance)
Li Hai (Beijing, freelance writer)
Tian Yongde (Inner Mongolia, folk human rights activists)
Zan Aizong (Hangzhou, journalist)
Liu Yiming (Hubei, freelance writer)
Liu  Di (Beijing, freelance writer)

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