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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."

CHINA TIBET INDIA: Tibetan dissidents say they are far from al-Qaeda, blame usual Chinese attacks

May 11, 2008

AsiaNews
by Nirmala Carvalho
 May 7, 2008 [09:43]

Speaking to AsiaNews the vice president of the Tibetan Youth Congress rejects Chinese accusations of terrorism, stressing the difference between his group and the Dalai Lama’s aims, which is only autonomy.

Dharamsala (AsiaNews) – Tibetan dissidents “have no ties to al-Qaeda. Accusations by Chinese propaganda have no basis and are an attempt to discredit our commitment. If this were not true, we would be a clandestine organisation; instead we have been involved in politics in front of everyone for decades,” Dhondup Dorjee, vice president of the Tibetan Youth Congress (TYC), told AsiaNews.

 In rejecting China’s terrorism charges, he said the Indian government and Indian intelligence agencies are “aware of all our activities and proceedings and the TYC is transparent in its activities and dealings. Beijing knows that we have a political mandate we received from the Tibetan people in exile and is afraid of this. We have 83 regional chapters with over 30,000 active members divided between China, India and Nepal. China is afraid of this and knows very well that we are not terrorists.”

The first charges of fundamentalism were made by China’s state-owned news agency Xinhua last March when an Italian journalist interviewed a Tibetan independence leader who claimed that “suicide bombers were preparing to strike Chinese territory.” A statement denying the claim was made the following day but was never published.

According to the Tibetan activist “this is standard procedure for the Chinese government which is to accuse anyone who does not share its policies of being a terrorist. Our struggle is political for Tibet’s independence. We reject fundamentalism.”

This, Dorjee noted, is what distinguishes us from the Dalai Lama who calls for autonomy whereas we want independence. The religious leader is a champion of non violence and is willing to accept a compromise even if he strongly believes in democracy. We know that under Beijing there is no democracy; this is why we want to be completely independent.”
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