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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?"

German parliamentary rights experts call trip to Tibet one-sided

April 22, 2009

Posted on : 2009-04-20 | Author : DPA
News Category : Asia

Beijing - Members of a German parliamentary delegation allowed to visit
Tibet said Monday that they were constantly escorted by Chinese minders
during their trip and said it was deeply one-sided. Holgar Haibach, the
head of the four-member delegation from the human rights committee of
the German Bundestag, said many of the group's questions were not
answered and their minders in Lhasa, Tibet's capital, wanted to give the
Germans the impression that all was normal in Tibet.

"The one-sidedness was formidable," he said, adding that the delegation
was not allowed to visit a prison during its three-day stay in Lhasa.

The delegation added that the Chinese army's presence there was
unchanged and massive.

Haibach said the Chinese minders told the delegation that all monks went
voluntarily to "patriotic education campaigns," but one monk told the
delegation that participation was required.

The campaign was introduced after deadly unrest in March 2008 in
Tibetan-populated areas of China. While the Chinese side has accused the
Dalai Lama, Tibetan Buddhism's spiritual leader, of provoking the
unrest, trials nearly two weeks ago in which four Tibetans were
sentenced to death for fatal arson fires did not present any findings on
the accusation, delegation member Burkhardt Mueller-Soenksen said.

The trip was the first by German human rights experts since the outbreak
of the protests against Chinese rule.

Another committee delegation travelled at the same time to the
far-western region of Xinjiang, where Muslim Uigurs complain of
oppression from China's government.

The delegations had earlier discussed the death penalty; administrative
detention, which in China can be ordered without trial; and other human
rights issues while in Beijing.

There were always two "red lines" in the discussions with Chinese
authorities, Haibach said: Neither Chinese national unity nor the
authority of the Communist Party could be called into question.

Delegation member Juergen Klimke called the visit a success even when
many of its questions went unanswered. "When they say nothing, that also
provides insight," he said.

Fear of arrest and torture drives Tibetan monk to suicide
Phayul[Tuesday, April 21, 2009 18:55]
By Phurbu Thinley

Dharamsala, April 21: For fear of arrest and torture by Chinese police,
a Tibetan monk named Shedup is said to have committed suicide at a
monastery in Amdo Rebgong, in Qinghai Province, earlier this month, a
report on the official website of the Tibetan Government-in-Exile said
Tuesday.

The report said Shedup, aged around 40, committed suicide at a monastery
in Rebgong (Ch: Tongren) in Malho Tibet Autonomous Prefecture in Qinghai
Province), around April 2.

The name of the monastery where he committed suicide is still unknown,
but it is believed to be Tarjang monastery located in Dowadhog. The
other monastery in the area is known as Pengya, the report said.
(Tarjang, Dowadhog & Pengya spelled as pronounced in Tibetan)

According to the report, Shedup was earlier arrested for his alleged
role in a protest in Rebgong in March last year and was severely beaten
and tortured in custody.

The report said he was later released, but his name appeared again on a
wanted list of Tibetans to be arrested sometime before the Tibetan
National Uprising Day last month.

The report said Shedup finally killed himself to escape arrest and
torture by Chinese Public Security Bureau officials.

According to the report, Shedup had visited India to “pursue studies as
a part of his post-retirement spiritual quest” at Lubum Khangtsen, Gaden
Jangtse Monastery in South India. He later returned to Tibet via Nepal
in 2006, the report said.
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