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"I believe that to meet the challenges of our times, human beings will have to develop a greater sense of universal responsibility. It is the foundation for world peace."

Kalon Tenpa Tsering, Jetsun Pema conferred Honorary Citizenship in Italy

January 29, 2008

Phayul
Monday, January 28, 2008

Thiene (Italy), January 27: Kalon Tenpa Tsering, representative of His
Holiness the Dalai Lama in India and Jetsun Pema, His Holiness the Dalai
Lama’s younger sister and Chairman of the Tibetan Children’s Village,
were conferred Honorary Citizenship by Mrs Maria Rita Busetti, the Mayor
of Thiene Municipality, a city in the Northern Italian province of Vicenza.

They are honoured jointly by fourteen municipalities in the province of
Vicenza that are involved internationally in a peace promoting body
called (H)elp. (H)elp has been active in promoting many peace related
initiatives and practical solidarity in different parts of the world.
This year they are dedicated to Tibet.

The fourteen municipalities recognise that Tibetan people, like any
another people of world, has the same right to self-determination and,
civil and religious rights. Mayors of all the fourteen municipalities
were present at the ceremony.

(H)elp conferred the Honorary citizenship to Jestun Pema and Tenpa
Tsering in recognition of their important role that is internationally
relevant by taking care of their nation, to education of thousands of
Tibetan refugee children and therefore the future of their nation.

In her speech, Jetsun Pema thanked the dignitaries and said, “At this
critical time for Tibetans, as refugee, receiving such supports is very
encouraging for us. Your support to us does send a message to China. I
deeply appreciate the solidarity of (H)elp in different parts of world
and I ask you to continue to help Tibetan Children in future.”

“We thank for this honorary citizenship and recognition of the rights of
Tibetans and showing support to us. Such support to us doesn’t mean that
it is an anti-Chinese, but it shows that you are pro justice, pro truth
and pro peace,” Mr Tenpa Tsering noted in his acceptance speech.

The fourteen municipalities also called for the recognition of the
legitimacy of the Tibetan Government-in-Exile, based in the Northern
Indian town of Dharamsala, and unanimously called upon the external
ministry of the Italian Government to support the non-violent struggle
of Tibetan people for freedom.

As part of the visit, Kalon Tenpa and Jetsun Pema attended a public
forum on “Human Rights in China” with human rights experts from Padova
University. They also took time meeting school students of Thiene city.
Cultural activities was also organised in the town to coincide with
their visit.

Based on report filed by Tibetan Community Italy
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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