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31march2011202Dharamshala: The largest non-governmental organization in the Tibetan diaspora, the Tibetan Youth Congress Thursday (31 March) has held a press conference in Dharamshala, in response to the Chinese allegations in the ludicrous article titled 'Terrorist poised to rule "Tibetan government in-exile"?' which was published by the People's Daily."

"Li Hongmei recently published in a Chinese Communist Party newspaper that 'the Tibetan Youth Congress is a Terrorist Organization.' The Chinese Government have resorted to making baseless allegations about the TYC; the movement most central to the Tibetan struggle for independence," said Mr Dhondup Lhundhar, the TYC vice president.

"In the 41 years since inception, the campaign activities of the TYC have consistently remained non-violent and peaceful. The assertion that the protests of 2008 in Tibet were imbued by the TYC is untrue, and we strongly believe that it was the Chinese government who infused these protests. When attempts to prove the protests were violent in nature failed, the Chinese government used soldiers in Tibetan clothing to pose as violent protesters, and created propaganda films of 'violent mobs'; which were distributed and broadcast widely," he added.

Dhondup clarified by saying that the International community are well aware of the TYC's transparent goals to restore Tibetan independence. He further said that "Ms Li Hongmei's attempts to portray the TYC as terrorists highlights her poor journalism and we feel her report also highlights China's lack of democratic principles."

The TYC vice president repeatedly stressed that he also wish to emphasize that the "TYC is a Non Governmental Organization, separate and not prescribed by either His Holiness the Dalai Lama or the Tibetan Government in exile; contrary to Ms Li's reports; who claims that "when the TYC was established, His Holiness the Dalai Lama and leading members of the organisation made speeches that they would 'use terrorism' to achieve their goals."

Mr. Dhondup responded to the latest Chinese allegations by saying "this has not been the first allegation made by the Chinese press and we highlight that Li Hongmei is simply a mouthpiece repeating the rhetoric of the communist government regime; she cannot be regarded as an independent journalist or part of the Free Press. Ms Li's article also targeted Dr. Lobsang Sangay as a former Centrex member, who she claims is; "a terrorist poised to rule the Tibetan Government In Exile".

Further response to the allegations, Dhondup said "the illogical and unreliable review made by Ms Li only manifests China's obsession with their constant efforts to damage the legitimacy and reputation of the Tibetan struggle for independence, the Tibetan Government in exile and in particular the Tibetan Youth Congress. The Tibetan Youth Congress would like to reiterate and remind independent researchers and the international media that such unfounded allegations have no place in this world."

According to the organisation website, TYC is the largest NGO of the exile Tibetan. It was founded in 1970 and has more than 30,000 members worldwide, making it the largest non-government organisation of Tibetans in exile. Its members are united in the struggle to restore complete independence to Tibet. The organisation does not subscribe to any particular political or religious ideology and is sustained by membership fees, public donations and fund-raising events.

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