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choeyang-2012Dharamshala: - Choeyang Kyi, the very first Tibetan to be represented in the Olympic Games wins Bronze medal.On the 11th of August at 5PM London time, Choeyang together with other athletes competed in the 20 km Women's Walking Race for the triumphant podium spot.

Tibetan athlete finished third in the race with the time of 1 hour, 25 minutes and 16 seconds. While first and second places were taken by Russians Elena Lashmanova and Olympic champion and three-time world champion, Olga Kaniskina, just 14 seconds before Choyang, the Bronze medalist said: "I'm extremely honored to take part as the first representative of the Tibetans at the Olympic Games and to win a medal."

A number of Tibetan flags and a banner "You go girl...We Tibetans are with you" were seen in the cheering audience in order to support Choeyang. Later when asked by journalists if she has noticed encouragement of the race viewers, the Bronze medal winner replied hearing the cheers but unfortunately not being able spot the actual Tibetan enthusiasts.

She said she heard Tibetans encouraging her along the route that went past the residence of Queen Elizabeth II. "I heard it! Really. I heard a Tibetan cheering me on. At the time, I looked backward but couldn't see who that person was," she said.

Shortly following this, historical for the whole Tibetans, achievement, social media and network sites came alive with congratulation words to the winner. The entire Tibetan communities celebrated Choeyang's success as a Tibetan.

Choeyang was born on 11th of November 1990 in Tsochang, Amdo province where as a child she was running on the Tibetan plateau. After joining a sports school and starting professionally race walking at 18 years of age, her talent and hard work were noticed.

In 2010 young athlete was invited to join the Chinese national team. A year later, Choeyang came fifth at the 2011 World Championships in Athletics in Daegu, in Korea. Further, at the beginning of this year at the Taicang IAAF Race Walking Challenge, the Tibetan completed 20 km walking race in 1 hour, 27 minutes and 4 seconds which set a clear path to the Olympic Games.

Just before the 11th of this month, young athlete was positioned 10th in the world. As for today, Choeyang is a first Tibetan to win Bronze medal. Her performance at the Olympic Games is also her career best.

This win also reminded of the current Tibet issue. Choeyang's participation at the Olympic Games as part of the Chinese national team caused some dissatisfaction as Tibetans are experiencing harsh Chinese oppression and, as a sign of protest, are setting themselves on fire.

"China uses things like this for their political gain. The fact that a Tibetan is participating in the Olympics does not take away anything from the dire situation prevailing inside Tibet," said Dicki Chhoyang, Kalon for information and international relations of the Central Tibetan Administration."She must have put in a lot of effort to reach there. But we are sad that she cannot represent a free Tibet" Dicki Chhoyang said further.

Although, the present situation in Tibet still looks very gloomy and uncertain, the happiness of Choeyang's triumph at the Olympic Games is broadly shared between Tibetan communities.

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