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10thmarch201100991Dharamshala: Over half a century ago, adhering to the letter and spirit of 17-point agreement, the then Governement of Tibet had explored all possible avenues for a peaceful co-existence between Tibet and China. In contrast to that, the Chinese troops stationed in Tibet exposed their colonial deigns when they carried out a brutal campaign to sabotage and subvert the terms of the 17-point agreement. The Chinese troops eventually went so far as to posing a serious danger to the safety and life of His Holiness the Dalai Lama.Thus, in what was a desperate act of final despair, the people in Lhasa from all three Tibetan provinces were forced into chanting the slogans of restoring Tibetan independence and waging an extensive campaign to fend off colonial encroachment.

The Chinese government has since then unleashed a tsunami of Strike Hard oppression through a series of political campaigns that caused unprecedented catastrophes to both the land and people of Tibet, including the untimely deaths of over 1.2 million Tibetans and destruction of over 6 000 monasteries. This day of 10 March not only renews our resolve to keep the harrowing memories of our past ordeals forever etched in our hearts and minds, but presents an occasion to pay homage to the brave Tibetan men and women who have sacrificed their lives and properties for the sake of Tibetan cause.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama, followed by some 80 000 Tibetans, was thus compelled to escape into exile in India, where His Holiness established the Tibetan administration in exile and managed resourcefully settlements and schools, as well as centers of Tibetan religious studies. As a result, the voice of Tibetan movement today gets amplified on a global scale. For this tremendous accomplishment, we must not only have a great sense of pride and fulfillment, but also express our deepest gratitude to His Holiness the Dalai Lama and our senior generation that realized it with great dedication and courage of sacrificing for the betterement of Tibetan cause.

Presently, as the giant tide of global economic recession reached new heights, China became increasingly far more assertive in brandishing its hard and soft powers on all avenues of international politics, most notably by trumpeting China's GDP growth rate that has sustained over decades. In order to build its international image and prestige, China tries to project an appearance of being committed to a more inclusive participation and consultation in resolving global issues. Similarly, great efforts are also put into promoting Chinese culture by establishing ties and cultural exchanges with foreign countries. While one can view these actions as necessary and vital for a great nation, China has also a tendency to brandish its might as a global power whenever it is required to muzzle unsavoury qustions like those about its freedom of speech. Whereas on the other hand, when the issue is about sharing the burdens of global responsabilities, China evades them by feigning to be merely a developing country. Despite the label of "worshop of the world" sustained on a cheap labour and production cost, China aparently has still quite a long way to go before it reaches the status of a real global power.

In order to sustain the dictatorship of Chinese Communist Party by all means necessary, be it propaganda or administrative and control mechanisms, the present Chinese regime has put on the backburner the issue of fundamental freedoms like democracy, rule of law and human rights that are enjoyed by the people in the free world. However, instead of addressing its basic social problems through fair and lawful measures, China's spending on domestic stability has been far greater than on its national security. China also employs other measures like repression and incarceration of dissenters, incessant crackdown against the so called separatism in minority regions, condoning the corrupt exploitation of national resources by rich business people and officials, imposing stringent restrictions on internet and media, and persecution of religious leadres and communities. The way China has been whipping up nationalistic sentiments amidst a great majority of its own population that goes against the general progression of human society in the 21st century.

The recent string of protest movements that jolted North Africa and Middle East Asia relays a clear message about the universality of human rights. For a country like China with a long history of civilization, dictatorship cannot sustain itself merely by force and oppression; there is no other way than to eventually tread the path trodden by international mainstream.
Since China unrolled its Western Development Campaign and introduced the policy of mutual support between east and west, the buzzword has always been that the western regions, including the entire Tibetan areas, should provide raw materials and work opportunities to the people in the eastern part of China. In order to build new towns, Tibetan nomads were forcefully evicted and resettled from their ancestral land. There are also a whole host of other issues involving the environmental consequences of wanton resettlement of Tibetan households, building of a vast network of railways, highways and airports and related auxiliary projects. Under the guise of so-called Aid-Tibet projects, an overwhelming number of Chinese high-skilled professionals - including those specializing in the construction of dams and extraction of mineral resources and those working in the state-run business entreprises were increasingly assigned strategic positions in the administration of Tibetan counties and townships.

Furthermore, the families and relatives of these officials also feast on the work opportunities presented by a meriad of aid-Tibet projects. After studies reported that the Tibetan plateau has some of the Asia's largest reserves of mineral resources, the Chinese state-run mining industries have been running amok exploring and extracting mineral reserves from across Tibet. The four largest electric power industries of China have plans to construct dams on all major rivers of Tibet. Even the Chinese private enterprises have been liberally exploiting the minerals resources of Tibet as wild card game without any form of restraint or regulation and concern over the natural environment. Similarly, the wild life of Tibet has also been irreversibly victimized by extensive poaching. Thus, the chilling question of just how many more years before the entire Tibetan environment is ripped to tatters shivers down our spines.

Because of the years of Chinese population influx into Tibet, driven mainly by state-sponsored economic opportunities, the social resources in Tibet are today controlled by the Chinese people, while the native Tibetan nomads and peasants are further marginalized to the edges. This makes it amply clear that China's malafide intention is to annihilate both the habitat and inhabitants of the land of snows.

In addition to imposing a whole new range of rules and regulations on monasteries and reincarnation of lamas, the Chinese authorities have installed special "work teams" in the monasteries to undertake forced education campaign of "love your country, love your religion". In fact, there are also many monasteries wherein the authorities have installed special unites of local public security. These security officers closely monitor and regulate the daily life at the monastery and also resort to intimidation of monks and nuns. Disregarding the language aspirations of Tibetan teachers, students and intellectuals, and in total contravention of China's own laws and regulations. The authorities have imposed a policy of instituting Chinese as the main language of instruction in all Tibetan schools. Beginning from the preschool.

Eminent Tibetan people including writers, singers, and environmentalists were persecuted by arbitrary detention and incarceration on concocted charges. Without adequate legal representation, some of them were sentenced for a fixed term, while some others were sentenced for life imprisonment. There were also many cases of torture deaths, missing people and those in terrible physical health as a result of beatings in detention. As of now, at least 831Tibetan prisoners of conscience are reported to be languishing inside Chinese prison. The Tibetan parliament-in-exile condemns in the strongest terms the colonial wrongdoings of China and ardently urges it to revoke all its oppressive policies in Tibet.

For all those who perished during the recent disasters in Kyigudo and Druchu, the Tibetan government and the people held special prayer services and raised relief funds by mobilizing public donations. Even though it is impossible to prevent natural calamities, there were nonetheless clear indications of human blunders being a major contributing factor in triggering those disasters. The Chinese authorities are therefore well-advised to be seriously concerned about the likely ramifications of their excessive exploitation and devastation of Tibet's natural environment.

The Tibetan struggle headed by His Holiness the Dalai lama is founded on the cardinal principles of non-violence and truth. Since our approach of pursuing the mutual interest of both Tibet and China serves as a model framework for the resolution of global conflicts, with the passage of time, the international support for our approach has been increasing by leaps and bounds, including the support from foreign governments and parliaments, NGO's and individuals. As a result, the Tibet issue today has become virtually a mandatory topic of discussion for the world leaders.

From as far back as the 1980's, the exile government has consistently pursued the middle-way approach by engaging in a series of talks to resolves a mutually beneficial solution to the Tibet problem. Furthermore, after the revival of contacts between Beijing and Dharamsala in 2002, the memorandum on genuine autonomy for the people of Tibet that outlines the aspiration of the Tibetan people and formulated in accordance with the provisions of the constitution of PRC, Was proposed to Beijing during the 8th round of Sino-Tibetan talks. Similarly, in January 2010, Dharamsala further issued an exhaustive clarification to China's misinterpretation of the memorandum. As the Chinese government still tries devious means to prolong the process, we urge the Chinese leadership to broaden its horizon of intellectual acumen and have the courage to seek a meaningful solution to the issue of Tibet.

In just a few days, the final elections of both the Kalon tripa and the Tibetan parliament will be held. We urge all the Tibetans to value their democratic responsibilities and participate in this great celebration of democracy by casting their votes. Regarding the implementation. Everybody should therefore be aware of the fact that the implementation of all those recommendations are as of now in full swing.

As we have already spent over half a century in exile, we should express our heartfelt gratitude to the government and people of India for providing us a second homeland, as well as the governments, organizations and individuals across the globe for their consistent support to the Tibetan cause.

In conclusion, we pray for the long life of His Holiness the Dalai lama and as per the existing democratic practices beseech him to continue to lead us as the political and religious leader of Tibetan people. We also pray for the day when His Holiness the Dalai lama will grace the land of snows with his footprints and Tibetans in and outside Tibet are reunited in glory.

The Tibetan parliament-in-exile
10 march 2011
Translated from the original Tibetan test by Dhundup Gyalpo.

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