Join our Mailing List

"Canada can, within a positive friendly atmosphere, ask the Chinese government to resolve the Tibetan situation."

Beijing Under Fire for Detaining Pro-Tibet Activists

August 24, 2008

Foreign pro-Tibet activists are detained by Chinese police and
security guards after they staged a protest near the main Olympics
venue in Beijing Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2008
Deutcshe Welle
August 22, 2008

Beijing police have ordered 10 pro-Tibet activists from Germany,
Britain and the US to 10 days detention. The harsh penalty has drawn
hefty criticism, particularly from Washington.

Florian Norbu Gyanatshang, a 30-year-old Tibetan-German from
Stuttgart, was among those being held in Beijing. Head of the German
chapter of the Tibetan Youth Association in Europe, the software
developer was arrested on Thursday, Aug. 21, for unfurling a Tibetan
flag near the Olympic stadium in the Chinese capital.

"As a German citizen, I cannot remain silent at the blatant human
rights violations that are occurring in Tibet," he said in a
statement published in Germany after his arrest. "And as a Tibetan, I
would like to stand by my fellow countrymen in this difficult situation."

Two Americans and one Briton were arrested with Gyanatshang for
disturbing the "public order." Chinese police said on Friday that
they had detained another six US activists for 10 days.

Ten-day detention is the harshest treatment so far of Tibet activists
since a series of demonstrations in the capital during the Olympics.
Chinese law allows police to force people to undergo administrative
detention without trial. Dozens of other protesters have been
deported shortly after their arrest during the Games.

US urges human rights standards

The six Americans most recently detained were believed to be from the
US-based group Students for a Free Tibet, which had held eight
pro-Tibet protests in Beijing since Aug. 6.

"These people of conscience from many walks of life were here to make
sure the Tibetan issue was at the forefront during these Olympics
Games," Kate Woznow, the group's campaign director, told DPA news agency.

A spokeswoman for the US Embassy in Beijing told DPA that the embassy
was aware of the detainments, but she could not provide details due
to privacy concerns.

"We encourage the government of China to demonstrate respect for
human rights, including freedom of expression and freedom of religion
of all people during the Olympic Games and beyond," said spokeswoman
Susan Stevenson.

"These rights are protected by China's own constitution and
international human rights standards to which China has agreed."

When asked about the detentions and other human rights issues,
Chinese Olympic Organizing Committee Vice-President Wang Wie said
Western media were showing a bias against China and lack of knowledge
about the country at a press conference on Friday.

"History will show that awarding the Games to China was the correct
decision," he told reporters, adding that they should "write the truth."
CTC National Office 1425 René-Lévesque Blvd West, 3rd Floor, Montréal, Québec, Canada, H3G 1T7
T: (514) 487-0665
Developed by plank