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Parliament speakerTURIN: On 5th July 2013, The speaker of the Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile attended an international conference on "scenarios and perspectives for the future of Tibet" in Turin. The conference was jointly organised by the Association for Tibet and Human Rights of the Regional Council of Piemonte and the Tibetan community in Italy.

Addressing the conference, Mr Valerio Cattaneo, chairman of the Board of the Piedmont Region, said: "There is a community (Tibetans) that does not give up despite the difficulties to make their voices heard. They seek dialogue with Italian institutions and participate in conferences, exhibitions and meetings in the conference to highlight their cause."

"This conference is further proof of the will of the Legislative Assembly of Piemonte to defend the rights of this extraordinary people. An immense culture which was almost completely destroyed," Mr Giampiero Leo, councillor of Piedmont Region, said.

In his statement, Mr Penpa Tsering, Speaker of Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile, said: "For how long will the leaders of the various nations will be able to ignore the Tibetans in Tibet who are burning themselves? And how many more lives will be sacrificed to attract attention? We appeal to the international community to stand firmly by Tibetan's people at this time and to appeal to China to give free access for journalists and diplomats from around the world to visit Tibet to assess the actual condition there," he said.

Parliament speaer 2013Dignitaries who attended the conference include Mr André Gattolin, Senator of the French Parliament, Mr Matteo Mecacci and Mr Gianni Vernetti, former presidents of the Intergroup Italian Parliamentary for Tibet, Mrs Mariacristina Spinosa, councilor for the City of Turin and Mr Bruno Mellano of the Radical Adelaide Aglietta. Tibetan officials present at the conference were Ven. Thubten Wangchen, member of the Tibetan Parliament in exile from Europe, Mr Kalsang Gyaltsen, Special envoy of His Holiness the Dalai Lama in Europe, Mr Nyima Dhondup, president of the Tibetan community in Italy.

Addressing the Tibetan community, Speaker Penpa Tsering spoke on the Tibetan people's bounden duty to preserve their language and culture, which are facing annihilation under the Chinese rule. He said the responsibility to safeguard our language and culture rests with everyone of us, adding that families in the west should speak in Tibetan at home so that the children could learn Tibetan. He also spoke on the significance of the exile Tibetans' voluntary green book contribution for the sustenance of the Tibetan movement.

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