Dharamshala: - Celebrateding its 30th year of re-establishment in exile, Tibetan Women's Association (TWA) remembered all the great women martyrs who bravely sacrificed their lives in the Tibetan struggle.
In a statement it issued here on Wednesday, 10 September in connection with its 30th year of reestablishment anniversary, TWA President Tashi Dolma said "they heartily honour and remember all the great women martyrs who led and took part in the greatest uprising on March 12, 1959 and bravely sacrificed their lives in the struggle."
Former minister Rinchen Khando as chief guest addressed a gathering at Lhagyalri early this morning for incense offering ceremony to mark the 30th re-founding anniversary on 10th September, 2014. Tibetan MPs and representatives of various Tibetan NGOs participated in the event.
"We share our solidarity with all our brothers and sisters who set themselves alive with fathomless courage and dream to free Tibetans from Chinese repression and make every Tibetan's dream come true," Dolma said in her statement.
"TWA is a historic association run by Tibetan women from all three provinces to struggle against Chinese oppression, take equal responsibility to preserve her unique culture and to maintain a high-quality of social and political activism," she said, adding: "It was initially founded on March 12, 1959 when Tibetan women led an uprising to revolt against China's brutal occupation of Tibet, killing almost a million Tibetans and destroyed thousands of monasteries."
On September 6, 1984, in His Holiness the Dalai Lama's address at the pre-advisory meeting on the selection of the 9th member of the Tibetan parliament, His Holiness spoke about the existence of Tibetan Women's Organization before and also expressed the importance of having such organization in Tibetan community. Hence, the TWA was officially reinstated in exile on September 10, 1984. The association had a very humble beginning with 800 Tibetan women as members and 12 regional chapters across India.
Today, TWA is one of the oldest non-governmental organization and the only Tibetan women's organization in exile. TWA encompasses 17,000 members in 56 regional chapters across four continents (Asia, America, Europe, and Australia).
With blessing of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and remembering the undying spirit of fellow Tibetan brothers and sisters, the group said it is making its 'efforts to bring up Tibetan issue on International platforms to spread awareness and get justice to our cause.'
"TWA focus remains on strengthening our exile community by supporting the education of women, organizing various training programs and workshops to empower Tibetan women in exile," the statement said.
Since 2013, TWA said it has undertaken a project called 'The Legal Empowerment of Tibetan Women in Exile, India,'- an educational program to make women and men aware of protection of women and children's legal rights under Indian law. The statement said "This holds a mission to strengthen the social foundations of the Tibetan community in exile by creating a gender sensitive and an empowered and progressive society."
According to her statement, 'TWA has been carrying its second round of direct outreach program of Legal empowerment of Tibetan women in 18 settlements in India since August 2014.'
"In the recent years, the Tibetan community in exile has come to know of the Chinese government's massive environmental destruction and intense restriction on the practice of Tibetan religion and celebration of traditional Tibetan festivals in Tibet.
The group has condemned the Chinese police firing on peaceful Tibetan protesters in Dhanma Shukpa Village in Sershul County, eastern Tibet, on August 12, 2014.
They also condemned the recent comments by the Party Secretary of Tibet Autonomous Region Chen Quanguo, who urged Chinese officials to push mixed marriages among Tibetan ethnics and Han Chinese. "It is not Chen's personal yearning to assimilate Tibetans in populous Han Chinese; it is a deliberate policy of the Communist Party of China that is actively promoting in Tibetan areas," she added, saying: "TWA consider that this policy is a heinous strategy of Chinese government to genocide Tibetan ethnic and a measure to control Tibetan resistance."
Describing "Middle Way Policy" is an approach to resolve the issue of Tibet, and to bring about stability and co-existence between the Tibetan and Chinese people based on equality and mutual benefit. TWA strongly appealed International committees and Tibet support groups to urge and pressure China to restart the dialogue and forgo all the misconception it held against the policy.