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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."

With Games nearing end, RFA Tibet service reporter still denied visa

August 22, 2008

Committee to Protect Journalists
August 20, 2008

Hong Kong, Aug. 20 -- Despite appeals from his employer and questions
from the International Olympic Committee, Chinese authorities have
continued to bar Radio Free Asia reporter Dhondup Gonsar from
traveling to Beijing to cover the Games. Gonsar, an American citizen
of Tibetan ethnicity, was one of two journalists for the U.S.
government-funded broadcaster whose applications were approved in
writing by the IOC in July 2007, RFA said.

"We've asked for more information on this case, which we are told is
pending," IOC spokeswoman Giselle Davies said Tuesday in response to
CPJ's e-mail request for information about Gonsar's visa. "No more
information has been forthcoming." Gonsar and RFA's headquarters in
Washington said they, too, received no substantive response from
authorities to their requests for information.

"It's been two weeks since Dhondup Gonsar's visa situation was
publicly brought to the attention of the IOC and China. For his case
to still be pending, as the Games near their conclusion insults the
integrity of the Olympics. When the IOC awarded China the Games in
2001, both pledged there would be no restrictions on reporters
covering the Games," said Bob Dietz, CPJ's Asia program coordinator.

CPJ first raised Gonsar's case on August 8, calling for the issue to
be resolved quickly. Gonsar remains in Hong Kong, where he is
reporting on the Games for RFA's Tibetan service. Tibet remains an
issue of concern for China after ethnic rioting in March. In an
interview with CPJ, he said that neither his nor any of RFA's work on
the issue amounted to anything other than journalism.

"By refusing to let me in, China is really missing a chance to show
its openness, particularly after the events in Tibet in March," Gonsar said.

RFA's Mandarin reporter, Jill Ku Martin, was allowed to enter the
country and has been reporting from Beijing since she arrived.
CTC National Office 1425 René-Lévesque Blvd West, 3rd Floor, Montréal, Québec, Canada, H3G 1T7
T: (514) 487-0665   ctcoffice@tibet.ca
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