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

China gives written threat to Spain over Tibet, Spanish court adds Nangpala killings

August 24, 2009

Liang Guanglie
Phayul
August 21, 2009
Liang Guanglie

Dharamsala, August 21 -- China has rejected a
judicial request for Chinese officials to be
tried in Spanish court for "crimes against
Tibetan people" and demanded that the Spanish
government stop the investigation calling it a "false lawsuit."

In its first written response to the lawsuits
Chinese Embassy in Spain said Spain has violated
the "the basic principles of state jurisdiction
and immunity established by international law and
is not covered by the Treaty on Judicial
Assistance on Criminal Matters between China and Spain."

China said it "firmly refuses any request for
judicial assistance regarding this case, while
demanding that Spain assumes her responsibilities
regarding international law, adopts immediate and
effective measures to prevent any violation of
the Treaty on Judicial Assistance in Criminal
Matters between China and Spain and puts a stop
to said case as soon as possible." The Chinese
Embassy in Madrid also returned the Rogatory
Order issued by Spain's Ministry of Justice
calling for the leaders to testify back to the court.

Spain's National Court, which handles crimes
against humanity and genocide, accepted to hear a
lawsuit filed by Tibet Support Groups on July 9
last year. It was admitted under the principle of
"universal competence" adopted by the Spanish
judiciary in 2005 and under which Spanish courts
can hear cases of genocide and crimes against
humanity wherever they occur and whatever the nationality of the defendant.

Spanish Judge Santiago Pedraz informed the
Chinese Ministry of Justice on May 5 of rulings
against eight Chinese leaders, including Tibet
Autonomous Region Party Secretary Zhang Qingli,
in the Spanish High Court in connection with the
Chinese government’s crackdown on Tibetan
protesters since March 2008. Pedraz had requested
China in May to question the defendants in China
should they refuse to do so in Spain. A
representative of the Chinese Embassy in Madrid,
according to reliable sources in Madrid, is
believed to have indicated in verbal exchanges
with Spanish officials that Pedraz would be arrested if he visited China.

The Tibet lawsuits face threats from a resolution
passed by Spain's Congress on May 19 to limit the
jurisdiction of judges to cases in which there is a clear Spanish connection.

Despite the ruling and continuing pressure from
China, Pedraz has recently announced the
extension of one of the Tibet lawsuits to include
an investigation into the Nangpala shooting of
September 30, 2006, when 17-year old nun Kelsang
Namtso was shot dead by Chinese border forces
while attempting to cross the Tibetan border into Nepal.

Judge Pedraz asked the Indian government on July
14 for permission to travel to India in order to
interview the Tibetan witnesses of the Nangpala
shooting. American climber, Luiz Benitez, who
witnessed Kelsang Namtso being fatally shot in
the back as she and 74 other Tibetans including
nuns, monks and children attempted to flee across
the Nangpa la, gave evidence on July 17 to Judge Pedraz at Spain's High Court.

Suspects included in the lawsuit are Chinese
Defence Minister Lian Guanglie, State Security
Minister Geng Huichang and Public Security
Minister Meng Jianzhm, Communist Party Secretary
in Tibet Zhang Qingli, Politburo member Wang
Lequan, Ethnic Affairs Commission head Li Dezhu,
People's Liberation Army Commander in Lhasa
General Tong Guishan and Zhang Guihua, political
commissar in the Chengdu military command. Of
them, Zhang Qingli, Wang Lequan and Li Dezhu have
been reportedly associated as principal
architects of Chinese repression in Tibet and other restive ethnic minorities.

Spain's National Court, which handles crimes
against humanity and genocide, accepted to hear a
lawsuit filed by Comité de Apoyo al Tibet (CAT)
and Foundation Casa Del Tibet on August 5 last
year, three days before the Beijing Olympics. It
was admitted under the principle of "universal
competence" adopted by the Spanish judiciary in
2005 and under which Spanish courts can hear
cases of genocide and crimes against humanity
wherever they occur and whatever the nationality of the defendant.

Another National Court judge is currently
investigating an alleged genocide in Tibet in the
1980s and 90s which was testified before it by
three former Tibetan political prisoners, Palden
Gyatso; Jampel Monlam and Bhagdro.

A Spanish lawyer Dr Jose Elias Esteve and Alan
Cantos of Comité de Apoyo al Tibet (CAT) were in
India in February last year to ask Tibetans to
testify before the Spanish court after India
refused to set up a Rogatory Commission that
would allow the Tibetans to testify in India,
according to a report by Asian Age dated February 17, 2008.
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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