Taipei, Taiwan — For the first time, a roundtable conference brought together 30 prominent Tibetan, Hong Konger and Taiwanese leaders and activists to ally themselves in a movement for freedom, democracy and self-determination.
The conference, held in Taipei from April 7th through the 9th, was organized by Students for a Free Tibet and Human Rights Network.
Exile Tibetan legislators such as activist group Students for a Free Tibet, Asia Director, Dorjee Tsetan, Australasia MP Kyizom Dongdue and Gu-Chu-Sum Director Lhagyari Namgyal Dolkar as well as civil society components in exile such as Tibetan Youth Congress President, Tenzing Jigme, SFT Director Pema Yoko and activist Tenzin Tsundue were seen participating in the roundtable discussion. Hang Tung Chow, Hong Kong Democracy Activist, Human Rights Network for Tibet and Taiwan, Lin Hsin, and Taiwanese legislator Freddy Lim were also involved in the conference.
The conference recognized Tibet as a historically independent nation that is occupied by the Chinese government and recognizes the Tibetan Government in Exile as the legitimate representative of six million Tibetans, and expresses its support to the Tibetan people in their struggle for a free Tibet. The conference recognized Hong Kong’s right to self-determination and self-governance. The conference recognized Taiwan as a democratic nation whose security and sovereignty is being threatened by China’s imperialist ambitions, and believes that Taiwan deserves a seat at the United Nations alongside other countries.
The conference also honors the efforts and sacrifices of the people within China calling for democracy and freedom, and expresses our solidarity with them.
The conference called for the immediate release of Taiwanese human rights activist Li Ming-Che, Chinese activists Su Changlan and Chen Qitang and Tashi Wangchuk, Tibetan language rights activist in Tibet who faces 15 years in Chinese jail.
The conference urgently called on the international community to counter China’s assault on human rights and democracy, and support the people of Tibet, Hong Kong and Taiwan in their struggles.
Finally, the mission of the conference calls for a stronger alliance among the activist communities of Tibet, Hong Kong and Taiwan, in order to develop a long-term vision for coordination among the three movements to strive for human rights, freedom, democracy, and the right to self-determination.
“New waves of youth movements such as the Umbrella Revolution in Hong Kong, the Sunflower Movement in Taiwan, and the Lhakar Movement in Tibet have activated the political consciousness of a new generation and emboldened them to pursue their fundamental rights,” said Dorjee Tseten.
"Given the political changes taking place in China, and new threats and opportunities arising amid changing geopolitical circumstances, we believe it is critical for leaders of different movements to join forces and build a united alliance against a common threat – the CCP,” added Dorjee.
The collaborative exercise amongst the representatives at Taipei brought together like-minded activists and youth leaders attempting to forge ahead, “new horizons of possibilities in our activism, and provide a unique platform for activists from these three movements to share skills and resources, and exchange stories and experiences of nonviolent resistance with each other. We plan to develop a long-term vision for coordination among the three movements, and devise strategies to safeguard the freedom, democracy, and human rights that are threatened or suppressed by the CCP regime,” the joint press release stated.
Tibet was invaded by Communist China in 1949. Since that time, over 1.2 million out of 6 million Tibetans have been killed, over 6000 monasteries have been destroyed and acts of murder, rape, arbitrary imprisonment, torture and cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment were inflicted on the Tibetans inside Tibet. Beijing continues to call this a "peaceful liberation".