Under unusually clear blue skies around 150 activists from the Tibetan community and beyond raised their flags, voices and banners in the streets of London to stand up for Tibet.
2011 has been an unprecedented year within Tibet for crackdowns and protests. At least nine cases of self-immolation by young Tibetans have occurred since March of this year, and the region has witnessed enormous human rights violations, forced re-education campaigns, and nomadic resettlement attempts at the hands of the Chinese authorities.
The Chinese embassy in London on Saturday was surrounded on the opposite side of the road by an ocean of Tibetan flags. With the aid of a megaphone, protesters chanted:
"China, China, China: Out! Out! Out!"
British MP Fabian Hamilton made a rallying call outside the embassy for Tibetans suffering in Tibet, and pledgedhis part in standing up for Tibet.
Upon arrival at 10 Downing Street, the peaceful demonstrators protested opposite the entrance gate, drawing attention from hundreds of passers-by to the issue.
In one interview for the Tibet Post International, a demonstrator remarked:
"We have to be vocal, we have to be visual".
Meanwhile, TYUK Director Karma Chura-Tsang and SFT UK's National co-ordinator Pema Yoko handed a direct letter to David Cameron to stand up for Tibet. Earlier in the year Cameron raised the issue with visiting guest Wen Jiabo, much to the visiting Chinese Premier's embarrassment. However, many across the Tibetan and International community feel not enough is being done for Tibetans in Tibet.
As the demonstration drew to a close, many of the Tibetan community who had gathered departed for a benefit dinner and evening for the nomad rights of Tibetans. Around a hundred members of the Tibetan community in England of all ages turned up to show their support. The communal eventalso raised money for the upcoming G20 summit in Nice, France, of which Tibetans need to get their voices heard to world leaders.
Among a social club strung with prayer flags and Tibetan music, the community shared ideas with the youngsters and engaging fun games which everyone participated in. Beautiful live Tibetan music was played by a trio of musicians, and rallying calls were made by speakers. The Tibetan community in Britain stood shoulder to shoulder at the weekend with their brothers and sisters in Tibet, proving that they would stand up for Tibet.