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freedom houseTibet remains the second least free place in the world according to an annual survey by Freedom House, the American human rights and democracy organization, The report assesses political freedom in countries and territories across the world and gave an assessment of the dismal state of political rights and civil liberties in occupied Tibet.

Tibet was classified overall as being ‘Not free’. Using a scale from 1 to 7 (with 1 being most free and 7 being least free) Tibet was rated a 7 for both political rights and civil liberties. Only 13 countries and territories received this lowest possible grade, including North Korea, Saudi Arabia and Sudan.

The report also provides further analysis by awarding each country a score out of 100 based on how it fared across 10 political rights indicators and 15 civil liberties indicators. Tibet received 1 out 100, which made it the second-worst scoring country in the world. Only Syria, now in its fifth year of civil war, came lower, scoring -1. Eritrea, North Korea, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan all came next, scoring 3 out of 100.

China scored 14, one less point than last year. It was listed as being “Not free” and was criticized by Freedom House for imposing “conditions approaching martial law” in Tibetan-populated regions.

Criticism of China included the "chilling effect on private and public discussion, particularly online, generated by cybersecurity and foreign NGO laws, increased internet surveillance, and heavy sentences handed down to human rights lawyers, microbloggers, grassroots activists, and religious believers."

Tibet's low score reflects the poor conditions that have persisted since the invasion 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".

The full report can be found here.

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