The Chinese-Tibetan Friendship Association Europe (CTFAE) has existed for one year. The aim of the association, according to Chairman Lobsang Wangdu, is to promote understanding and cooperation between the Chinese and Tibetan people.
The new organization, the European Council of Mongolia-Uyghur-Tibet-China (ECMUTC) strives to serve as a forum for the people of Mongolia, East Turkistan, Tibet and China to learn from each others' cultural identities. Their slogan is Freedom-Equality-Love-Culture-Peace.
Mrs. Mona Zhimin Tang introduced and closed the meeting, taking a moment of silence at the end to commemorate the "millions of people who died during more than 60 years of oppression by the Chinese Communist Party."
Mr. Xi Hai Ming, a Mongolian activist, spoke next, highlighting the similarities between the Tibetan people and the Mongolian people. Both observe the same form of Buddhism and have suffered similar abuses by the Chinese government.
He then presented the new organization, the ECMUTC. The organization is unique in that it brings several specific cultural groups together. "This is very symbolic," he said. "We all have to work together for freedom and we hope to have much support."
Mrs. Liao Tian Qi, a Chinese writer who has worked with the International Campaign for Tibet, said, "I'm deeply moved by seeing so much people here together showing their respect to His Holiness the Dalai Lama."
Mr. Andrew Swan of the Unrepresented Nations and People's Organisation (UNPO), said that the launch of the new organization is a "key moment in the campaign for human rights, freedom of expression, and respect for multiculturalism in China." Members of East Turkistan, Tibet and Inner Mongolia are members of UNPO, and have worked to raise awareness of human rights abuses under the People's Republic of China. "You can place no confidence in a judicial system that is intended to protect the State and by extension the interest of the Communist Party."
He made the distinction between the communist government of China and actual Chinese citizens, claiming that China is full of diversity and cannot be considered as a whole.
Mr. Lobsang Nyima, Liason Officer for relations with China in several European cities, is currently based in Geneva. He said, "We have a deep respect for everyone who has compassion in the heart...both Chinese and Tibetans need more understanding among each other." He stressed that the reason Tibetans are so respected worldwide is due to their compassion, love, and tolerance, values extolled by the Buddhist religion, and he urged all Tibetans to carry on these values and their culture to the next generation.
Mrs. Zhimin Tang, at the close of the meeting, expressed hope that the new organization will work together with the Chinese-Tibetan Friendship Society Europe. "The suffering of Tibetans, Mongolians, Uyghur and Chinese are the same, so we need to work together," she said.