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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?"

Tibetan group to expand genocide suit against China

July 11, 2008

AFP
July 9, 2008

MADRID (AFP) -- A Tibetan rights organisation said Wednesday it would
file an extension to a lawsuit in Spain that accuses top Chinese
leaders of genocide.

The extension would be presented Thursday in Spain's top criminal
court, which since June, 2006 has been hearing the case against seven
Chinese leaders, the non-governmental Tibet Support Committee said.

The original suit accuses the leaders, including former president
Jiang Zemin and former prime minister Li Peng, of torture and crimes
against humanity as well as genocide allegedly carried out in Tibet
during the 1980s.

"This extension to the lawsuit denounces the new wave of oppression
that began in Tibet on 10th March 2008, and just goes to prove that
acts of genocide continue to be committed against the Tibetan
people," the Tibet Support Committee said in a statement.

Unrest in the Tibetan region erupted on March 14 after four days of
peaceful protests against Chinese rule.

The Tibetan government-in-exile says 203 Tibetans were killed and
about 1,000 hurt in China's crackdown. Beijing insists that only one
Tibetan was killed, and has in turn accused the "rioters" of killing 21 people.

"The extension to the lawsuit also denounces China's manipulation of
the global war against terrorism in its attempt to justify and cover
up crimes against humanity committed against the Tibetan people," the
statement said.

The group also denounced "the lukewarm attitude of most of the
international community when it comes to demanding effective
protection of human rights."

The suit was admitted under the principle of "universal competence"
adopted by the Spanish judiciary in 2005 and under which Spanish
courts can hear cases of genocide and crimes against humanity
wherever they occur and whatever the nationality of the defendant.

China's opponents accuse it of systematic political, cultural and
religious oppression in the remote and devoutly Buddhist Himalayan region.

China has condemned the accusations of genocide in Tibet as slander
and it has accused Madrid of trying to interfere in its
administration of the Himalayan region.

China has ruled Tibet since 1951, a year after sending troops in to
"liberate" the region.

In a separate development, Spain's top anti-terrorist Judge Baltasar
Garzon also hit out China's crackdown in Tibet.

"Crimes against humanity have occurred" against Tibet, for which
there had been "no judicial response" on the part of the Chinese
authorities, he told a summer school at the Complutense University in
the town of San Lorenzo de el Escorial outside Madrid.

He called on the international community to "put a stop to this situation."
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