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US CONGRESS URGES CHINA TO END 'TIBET' REPRESSION

March 15, 2009

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

WASHINGTON (AFP) “ The US House of Representatives on Wednesday nearly
unanimously passed a resolution urging China to end "repression" in
Tibet despite Beijing's protests against the bill.

An overwhelming 422 lawmakers supported the resolution, with only one
voting against the statement urging China to "cease its repression of
the Tibetan people, and to lift immediately the harsh policies imposed
on Tibetans."

It also calls on China to resume dialogue with the Dalai Lama, Tibet's
exiled spiritual leader, to "find a lasting solution to the Tibetan
issue" and salutes India for hosting tens of thousands of Tibetan refugees.

China warned that US criticism on Tibet would harm ties between the two
countries. Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi was holding talks in
Washington Wednesday and was to meet Thursday with President Barack Obama.

"I hope the foreign minister who's in town today hears it -- it is
cultural genocide, systematically destroying the framework of Tibetan
society," said Congressman Frank Wolf, a sponsor of the resolution.

The Republican lawmaker sneaked undercover into Tibet in 1997 and said
he heard accounts of torture by monks and nuns who merely expressed
support for the Dalai Lama.

China broke up another round of protests on last year's anniversary of
the 1959 uprising. Rights groups say more than 200 people died and 1,200
remain unaccounted for a year later.

"Where are they” Let's ask the foreign minister when he goes to the
State Department -- where are they”" Wolf said angrily.
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