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Chinese-military-in-tibetLondon, UK: - In the first adjournment debate on Tibet in three years at the House of Commons, the Members of Parliament called for the British Government to make a public statement regarding the recent series of self-immolations by Tibetans.

As a mass of Tibetans and Tibet supporters from the London area rallied outside the House of Commons to express support for today's debate, MPs spoke in favour of speaking out in concern of the well-being of Tibetans within Tibet.

Simon Hughes, MP and Deputy Leader of the Liberal Democrats, acknowledging a petition by the online advocacy organization ‘Avaaz', said "I hope the government will strongly take up the issue of the self-immolations with the Chinese authorities, and make a robust statement of concern."

Interventions were made by a number of MPs who shared Mr Hughes' concerns one of whom was MP Jeremy Corbyn who urged the government to take strong action against China's systematic destruction of the Tibetan culture.

Agreeing to Mr. Corbyn's statement, MP Nic Dakin said, "Everything must be done to cease the crackdown."

"Tibetans in Tibet need to hear very vocal expressions of concern about China's intolerable oppression that has led to these tragic self-immolations," said Pema Yoko, National Director of Students for a Free Tibet UK.

"Our government, and governments around the world, must listen to the call by over 700,000 people to immediately take bold, multi-lateral diplomatic action to press China to end the crackdown before more lives are lost," said a member of International Tibet Network.

Responding for the government to these urges, Foreign Minister Henry Bellingham said, "The government is seriously concerned by the reports of the self-immolations by Tibetans and follows these and other developments very closely indeed."

He also assured that the government had responded by calling for restraint and will continue to urge China to allow access to Tibetan areas by diplomats and journalists."

The petition, directed at Prime Minister David Cameron and other world leaders has been signed by 665,000 people so far and urges governments to send fact-finding missions to Tibetan areas and speak out about the recent spate of despair in the third pole.

Overview

Total 13 Tibetans since 2009, most of them monks or former monks and In the past nine months, 12 Tibetans living inside Tibet have set themselves on fire protesting the Chinese repressive policies and tyrannical rule. Six of them succumbed to their wounds.
The most recent self-immolation was by Tenzin Phuntsok who set himself on fire after protesting the Chinese policies that restricted freedom of speech inside monasteries.

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