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"We Tibetans are looking for a legitimate and meaningful autonomy, an arrangement that would enable Tibetans to live within the framework of the People’s Republic of China."

CNN Documentary: "Buddha's Warriors" on August 2 and 3

August 2, 2008

Christiane Amanpour, CNN Investigate Tibetan Buddhist Struggles,
Political Unrest in Myanmar - One-Hour Buddha's Warriors Documentary
Premieres Saturday, Aug. 2, at 8 p.m. (ET/PT)
Reality TV
July 31, 2008

Expanding upon her award-winning investigative series God's Warriors,
CNN chief international correspondent Christiane Amanpour reports in
a new documentary that examines the nexus of politics and faith. For
Buddha's Warriors, Amanpour explores a new generation of Buddhists
who are actively engaged in political struggle. These believers of
love, kindness and nonviolence struggle to remain true to their
beliefs while at the same time confronting severe political and
cultural oppression.

The one-hour documentary will air on Saturday, Aug. 2, and Sunday,
Aug. 3, at 8 p.m., 11 p.m. and 2 a.m. All times Eastern.

In Buddha's Warriors, Amanpour investigates the roots of the conflict
between Chinese authority and ethnic Tibetans. Nearly 50 years ago,
the Dalai Lama fled Tibet after a failed uprising against communist
rule. Tibetans say that all but 13 of 6,000 Buddhist monasteries were
destroyed under Chairman Mao's Cultural Revolution from 1966 to 1976.
Those that have been rebuilt are now under the close, watchful eye of
the Chinese government. Monks there say that they are forced to
denounce the Dalai Lama and swear allegiance to China.

"Whether intentionally or unintentionally, some type of cultural
genocide is taking place," the Dalai Lama tells Amanpour in the
documentary. "Present situation is, [the] Tibetan nation [is]
actually facing death."

The Chinese government declined several CNN requests for interviews,
but the documentary does include the viewpoints of Chinese people who
believe Tibet is rightfully part of China, and comments from a
Chinese expert who says the Tibetans are better off under Chinese rule.

In March 2008, tensions reached a boiling point. The Dalai Lama
explained his dilemma to Amanpour in a candid interview filmed the
week before violent clashes between Tibetan activists and Chinese
troops in the Tibetan capital of Lhasa. He advocates a "middle way" -
Tibetan autonomy under Chinese rule. Many of his followers, however,
have grown impatient for more freedom and want complete independence
from China.

Amanpour also interviews some exiled Tibetan activists in India who
have led the latest protests for greater freedom and
independence.  Some say the Dalai Lama's "middle way" has failed to
stop the huge migration of ethnic Chinese into Tibet, stoking the
resentment that exploded in the streets of Lhasa.  Chinese
authorities charge that the violence was instigated by the protestors
for political gain. The violence so dismayed the Dalai Lama that he
threatened to resign.

In Myanmar, formerly Burma, Buddhist monks are also at the forefront
of political unrest.  Amanpour meets the leaders of the September
2007 Saffron Revolution, now in hiding in Thailand.  Monks marched
from their monasteries in protest over high food prices and spreading
impoverishment. The Myanmar junta, one of the world's most brutal
military dictatorships, reacted swiftly. Monks and other sympathizers
and protestors were arrested and beaten, and some were even
killed.  A CNN team goes undercover into Burma itself to investigate
the aftermath of the revolution. In clandestine interviews, monks vow
to continue their fight.

About Christiane Amanpour
Amanpour has reported on crises from many of the world's hotspots and
war zones and marks 25 years with CNN in 2008. Her assignments also
include exclusive interviews with world leaders on the human
consequences of natural disasters and global politics.  In 2008, the
National Press Club will honor Amanpour with The Fourth Estate Award
for a lifetime of contributions to American journalism. In 2007, she
received a Commander in the Most Excellent Order of the British
Empire (CBE), from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II for highly
distinguished, innovative contributions to the field of journalism.
Throughout her career, she has won eight Emmy Awards, four George
Foster Peabody Awards, two George Polk Awards, three duPont Awards,
an Edward R. Murrow Award, and a Television Academy Honors Award to list a few.
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