Lawyers representing a group of Chinese activists on trial in Jiangxi Province say they and the daughter of one defendant were harassed and roughed up outside the court on Wednesday.
Liu Ping, Wei Zhongping and Li Sihua are facing charges of illegal assembly in connection with their public call that government officials reveal their personal assets. The trial in the city of Xinyu is the first of activists associated with the New Citizens Movement, a loosely organized campaign of legal scholars and grassroots volunteers pushing for rule of law and greater public transparency in China. (read)
Laogai Museum: A Window into China’s Human Rights Disaster
Submitted by Zhang, Laogai Research Foundation
on Tue, 04/30/2013 - 14:25
The Laogai Museum, located at the intersection of 20th Street and S Street in Dupont Circle, Washington, DC, is the only museum in the world dedicated to exposing human rights abuses during the reign of the Chinese Communist Party. Harry Wu, a world-renowned human rights activist, founded the museum in 2008. Since relocating to its current address in 2010, the museum has attracted more and more tourists due to its increasing influence and popularity among the American public, as well as its easily accessible location. (read more)
3 Tibetans Sentenced in Immolation Cases 21 March 2013 By Edward Wong
BEIJING — Three Tibetans from Qinghai Province have been given prison sentences for “inciting state secession,” according to a statement on an official provincial Web site. On Monday, a court in Haidong Prefecture sentenced the Tibetans — Kalsang Dhondup, Jigme Thabkey and Lobsang — to terms of six, five and four years, respectively. The online announcement said that the men used self-immolations by Tibetans for publicity purposes and circulated texts and photographs related to Tibetan independence, spreading “bad influence locally and internationally.” Since 2009, at least 109 Tibetans have set fire to themselves to protest Chinese rule, and most have died. To deter the act, Chinese officials are trying to prosecute people associated with those who commit self-immolation. Tibetans opposed to Chinese rule say those who self-immolated did it out of frustration with Chinese policies.
Killings Stir Fears of Ethnic Tensions in Chinese Region By Edward Wong 8 March 2013
BEIJING — At least four people were killed and eight injured in what appeared to be a knife fight in the city of Korla, a center of oil production in the western Chinese region of Xinjiang, regional officials said on Friday.
The outburstofviolence on Thursday put local residents on edge over a potential flare-up in ethnic tensions, a common occurrence in parts of Xinjiang where ethnic Uighur, a Turkic-speaking people, bridle at what they call discrimination by the Han Chinese, who rule China. The police ordered people to stay off the streets in parts of Korla after the fight, but the authorities had lifted that ban by Friday. (Read more)
Tibetans Accused of Inciting Self-Immolations By Andrew Jacobs 28th February 2013
BEIJING — Security officials in the northwestern Chinese province of Gansu have arrested five Tibetans and accused them of inciting a series of self-immolations late last year by convincing participants they would become heroes in death, state news media reported. Four of those detained were Buddhist monks, who the police say were guided by a Tibetan exile organization.
The arrests, announced Wednesday by Xinhua, the state news agency, are part of an increasingly desperate government campaign to stop the spate of suicidal protests through intimidation, jail time and rewards for those who cooperate with the police. (Read more)
China: 2 Tibetan Monks Carry Out Fatal Protests By Edward Wong 25 February 2013
Two Tibetan monks have died in separate self-immolation protests in Tibetan regions of western China since Sunday, according to reports on Monday by two Tibet advocacy groups. Phagmo Dundrup, in his early 20s, set himself on fire at the Chachung Monastery in Qinghai Province on Sunday, according to a report by International Campaign for Tibet, a group based in Washington. On Monday, Tsesung Kyab, in his late 20s, set himself on fire outside the main temple of Shitsang Gonsar Monastery in Gansu Province. He was a relative of Pema Dorjee, 23, who carried out a similar protest at the same monastery last year. Since 2009, at least 106 Tibetans have set themselves on fire to protest Chinese rule in Tibet. Most have died.
Nepal Agreement May Break Deadlock Over Nation’s Leadership By Gardiner Harris 19 February 2013
NEW DELHI — Nepal’s major political parties have tentatively agreed to select the country’s Supreme Court justice as an interim prime minister so elections can be held in June, potentially breaking a five-year deadlock that has left the nation with a hobbled government.
The agreement is expected to be formally signed early Tuesday evening. The chief justice, Khilaraj Regmi, is expected to lead a technocratic cabinet that will seek to resolve the many issues that have stymied for years efforts to hold a follow-up set of elections to those held in 2008. (Read more)
Lobsang Sangay : "Pékin porte la responsabilité des immolations de Tibétains" Par Frederic Bobin le 14 Fevrier 2013
Le premier ministre tibétain du gouvernement en exil Lobsang Sangay, en 2011, à Washington. | KEVIN LAMARQUE/REUTERS
ENTRETIEN. La centième immolation d'un Tibétain par le feu s'est produite, mercredi 13 février, à Katmandou, capitale du Népal. Un jeune Tibétain s'est aspergé d'essence et a mis le feu à ses vêtements à proximité du sanctuaire bouddhiste de Bodnath, fréquenté par de nombreux pèlerins et touristes. Selon les autorités népalaises, son état est critique. Sur les 99 tentatives précédentes, 83 des immolés avaient succombé à leurs blessures. Le premier ministre tibétain en exil, Lobsang Sangay, successeur politique du dalaï-lama (ce dernier ayant conservé son titre de guide spirituel), avait accordé le 6 février à New Delhi un entretien au Monde dans lequel il dénonce la "ligne dure" de Pékin au Tibet. (Read More)
As one of the oldest unified countries in the world, China has had many political systems, but all have been dominated by hierarchical, patriarchal dynasties. China has never had a democratic government or a tradition of respect for human rights. Today, China is the world’s largest communist country. China is also one of the most severe violators of human rights. China’s human rights violations include systematic repression, brutal police action against its people, illegal repatriation of North Korean refugees, and repression of religious freedom and freedom of speech.
The systematic repression in China can be attributed to China’s Maoist state centralist ideology, lack of uniformity with which the law is applied, and rampant corruption within the system by members of the communist party. The corruption within the highest governing bodies does not provide the people with the representation that is promised in China’s constitution. The National People’s Committee is, by law, the “highest organ of state power;” and is theoretically elected by the people. However, in practice this body has taken a subordinate position to the State council, which is not elected by the people but appointed by the Party, taking all effective political participation away from China’s citizens.
This subjective application of China’s constitution and other laws allows authorities to fabricate charges in order to justify government crimes such as forced disappearances and indefinite imprisonment. This is especially true with people accused of being enemies of the state, or democratic reformers. China’s treatment of democratic reformers has become more public in light of recent events such as the imprisonment of, Liu Xiaobo, in 2008 who was the recipient of the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize. While prosecutions are on the rise among dissidents and political reformers, the Party has also employed police brutality against certain ethnic populations to control growing criticism throughout the country. Many ethnic minorities have begun to fight back, resulting in high death tolls and ongoing resentment.
One of the most severe examples of police brutality in China is in Tibet. Social unrest has escalated in the last several years in the Tibetan Plateau region. A total of 24 Tibetans have committed self-immolation (self-sacrifice by burning) protesting the legitimacy of the Han government. (Han is the ethnic majority in China.) Mass protests and self-immolations have spurred Chinese police to open fire on protesters several times in the past year. It is Chinese policy to re-populate Tibet with ethnic Han people, and to build railroads and roads to integrate Tibet into the Chinese nation-state, a denial of Tibet’s historic assertions of its independence.
The ethnic Uighur Muslim population in Xinjiang in Western China has also been subjected to brutal repression. Just as in Tibet, it is Chinese policy to re-populate Xinjiang with ethnic Han. There have been many instances in the past year involving Chinese authorities using unjustified police force on Uighurs. One incident this past year involved Chinese authorities barring a group of Uighurs from crossing the border out of China, opening fire and kidnapping at least 5 children. According to Amnesty International, Uighurs have been arbitrarily detained on trumped up charges of “splittism” and “inciting separatism” for exercising their right to freedom of religion, expression and association. Uighurs and Tibetans are only two of the many minorities in China that suffer from unfair and illegal treatment of the government.
The US Ambassador at Large for Religious Freedom, Suzan Johnson Cook, was denied admission to China this past year. Members of the Falun Gong movement have been systematically persecuted, and Christians worshiping outside officially approved churches have been arrested. China has been characterized by the US Commission on Religious Freedom as one of the most religiously repressive societies in the world.
North Koreans who escape into China face the threat of repatriation, against international human rights law. As a party to the U.N Refugee Convention, China is compelled to grant North Korean refugees political asylum in country. Instead, China has refused to recognize the refugee status of North Koreans and has labeled them as economic migrants and therefore not eligible for refugee status or asylum. Already this year China has attempted to repatriate almost thirty North Koreans in full knowledge of Kim Jong-Un‘s severe “three generations” regulation. This regulation calls for the imprisonment of a “criminal’s” family over three generations as a way to “clean the Korean race.” Kim Jong –Un reintroduced this policy after the death of his father to coerce citizens into mourning for their “Great Leader.”
Continuing close economic relations between China and the U.S provide a platform for the U.S and the international community to address these human rights abuses. As the largest growing economy in the world, China should be held responsible for the crimes it is committing against its own people. China’s continued resistance to international law should be a major concern for countries like the U.S and the EU as China’s influence grows. The international community should work to guarantee the safety and security of the Chinese people including ethnic and religious minorities, and should encourage China to re-open talks with the Dalai Lama and Tibetans, stop Chinese persecution of the Muslim Uighur minority, and ensure all people the fundamental rights of religion, speech, association and due process.
China’s role in supporting the genocidal policies of countries that provide it with oil and other resources, such as Sudan, should also be addressed. The US and Western nations could make China pay a much higher price in its trade relations for its direct support of dictatorships such as al-Bashir’s in Sudan and Assad’s in Syria.
According to The Laogai Research Foundation 3 situations count as varying degrees of genocide in modern Chinese history:
1) The Landlord Extermination and Anti-Rightist Campaigns
2) The Great Famine caused by Mao's Great Leap Forward
3) The Tiananmen Square massacre of 1989
And 3 in China today:
4) The 3-5 million slaves in forced-labor prisons (read more)
5) One-child policy, forced abortions and missing girls (read more)
6) "Cultural genocide" in Tibet and Xinjiang
Tenzin Khedup and Ngawang Norphel, holding Tibetan flags, set themselves alight in Yushu prefecture in China's Qinghai province.
Genocide Watch: the Autonomous Region of Tibet
Tibet’s conflicts with China date from the seventh century, when Tibetan King Songtsen Gampo extended Tibet’s borders deep into the interior of present day China. After King Gampo married a Chinese Princess, the Chinese dynasty claimed that Tibet became part of China (Shanor, 1995). However, Tibetans believe that a treaty signed with the Chinese in 821 recognized Tibetan sovereignty.
Tibet is part of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, the 'Roof of the World', one of the most isolated places on earth. Even though Tibet adjoins China, Tibet has a distinctive culture. More than 41 ethnic groups live in Tibet, including, Menpa, Luopa, Han Chinese, Hui, Sherpa, Denc and many more. Most people live in the Southern and Eastern areas. Although people who identify themselves as ethnic Tibetans account for 92.2 percent of the Tibetan people, about 46 percent of all Tibetans live in the Tibet Autonomous Region, and the rest in the neighboring Chinese provinces of Quinghai, Sichuan, Gansu, and Yunnan.
Tibet is one of the poorest regions in China, with an illiteracy rate of 45.5 percent, according to the 2000 population census (Tang, &, He, 2010). Tibetans who live in cities are mainly engaged in producing handicrafts, industry and business. Most Tibetans are devout Mahayana Buddhists, who follow the Dalai Lama, but there are a few Muslims and Roman Catholics.
Tibet is rich in natural resources, including hydro, solar, and geothermal energy. Tibet has large reserves of chromate and lithium carbonate. It has one of Asia’s largest forest regions, and has many medicinal herbs. Tibet’s hydropower potential accounts for nearly 30% of the national total. Yangpachen, China’s largest geothermal energy station, supplies 45% of electricity required by Lhasa. Geothermal energy in Tibet comprises 80% of China’s reserves (Li, &, Yang, 2005).
The major genocidal catastrophe for Tibet occurred in 1951, when the Peoples Republic of China invaded Tibet. The Chinese murdered thousands of monks and hundreds of thousands of Tibetans and destroyed hundreds of monasteries. They systematically colonized Tibet, sending Han Chinese in to take over every aspect of life. Under communist rule, China persecuted Tibetan religion, including torture and murder of thousands of Buddhist monks. The independent Tibetan press was banned. A massive resettlement of Tibet by ethnic Han from central China has changed the ethnic character of Tibet. The Dalai Lama fled to India in 1959, and has set up a government in exile in Dharamshala.
Han Chinese hold key government posts, which are controlled by the communist party. In contrast, Tibetans used to hold most ceremonial positions, but now even at the township level a Han Chinese or trusted ethnic Tibetan party official is in charge. Lack of Tibetan authority in the government leads to policies that favor the Han Chinese.
During the Chinese Cultural Revolution in the 1970’s the communist party unsuccessfully tried to eradicate Buddhism. The Chinese imposed “patriotic education sessions” for monks in the few remaining Tibetan monasteries. The Chinese government says it is “reforming” the educational system in Tibet. Children are able to go to school for free or at a low price (Hessler, 1999). However, the Chinese have abolished the monastery primary school system and have instead introduced new primary schools. Monasteries are forbidden to accept children before their teens.
Lhasa had its first outbreak of anti-Chinese demonstrations in 1987, which were brutally suppressed. In March 2008, violent Tibetan protests and riots broke out again to express Tibetan resentment of Han immigration into Tibet. As a result, many Western human right groups attempted to boycott the 2008 Beijing Olympics. (Tang & He, 2010). During the past year, at least 39 Tibetans, mostly monks and nuns have committed self-immolation to protest Chinese rule
Because of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, who won the Nobel Peace Prize and has published many books, Tibet is known around the world as a center of Buddhism. Although the Dalai Lama advocated Tibetan independence until the 1980s, since then he has said that sovereignty is not the answer for Tibet. In 1988 the Dalai Lama said he would renounce hopes for total independence in exchange for Tibetan self- government on all matters except defense and foreign policy. In his own words he said, “I have repeatedly assured the leadership of the People's Republic of China that I am not seeking independence. What I am seeking is a meaningful autonomy for the Tibetan people that would ensure the long-term survival of our Buddhist culture, our language and our distinct identity as a people. The rich Tibetan Buddhist culture is part of the larger cultural heritage of the People's Republic of China and has the potential to benefit our Chinese brothers and sisters” (The Dalai Lama, 2008).
Genocide Watch considers the Autonomous region of Tibet at stage 6 - Preparation:
According to the International Campaign for Tibet, over 1.2 million Tibetans have died as a result of Chinese occupation since 1951, a genocide that has gone unpunished.
During the Cultural Revolution, an anti-Chinese organization was formed in Nyenmo County. The government executed its leaders in Lhasa, killing 17 and 32 people respectively. Another group of young men from Lhasa were labeled counter revolutionary and were executed. Chinese officials forced their family members to attend the executions and to thank the executioners.
Tibetans have been driven to desperate measures like self-immolations. According to the International Campaign for Tibet, there have been 39 self-immolations this past year.
Chinese policies have expanded Chinese government controls on religious life and practice; ongoing “patriotic education” campaigns within monasteries that require monks to denounce the Dalai Lama; the permanent placement of Chinese officials in monasteries; increasingly intensive surveillance, arbitrary detentions and disappearances of Tibetans; and restrictions on and imprisonment of some families and friends of self-immolators.
In the last year, Chinese government security and judicial officials have detained and imprisoned Tibetan writers, artists, and intellectuals who criticized Chinese government policies.
Because of these factors, Genocide Watch warns that future genocidal massacres may occur, based on Chinese communist intentional destruction of part of the Tibetan national, ethnic, and religious group.
CHINA RESTRICTS RAMADHAN FASTING FOR UIGHURS IN XINJIANG
By Radiance Weekly
12 August 2012
Authorities in China’s restive northwestern region of Xinjiang have banned Muslim officials and students from fasting during Ramadhan, prompting an exiled rights group to warn of new violence. Guidance posted on numerous government websites called on Communist Party leaders to restrict Muslim religious activities during the holy month, including fasting and visiting mosques. Xinjiang is home to around nine million Uighurs, a Turkic speaking, largely Muslim ethnic minority, many of whom accuse China’s leaders of religious and political persecution. The region has been rocked by repeated outbreaks of ethnic violence.
A statement from Zonglang township in Xinjiang’s Kashgar district said: “It is forbidden for Communist Party cadres, civil officials (including those who have retired) and students to participate in Ramadhan religious activities.” Similar orders on curbing Ramadhan activities were posted on local government websites, with the educational bureau of Wensu county urging schools to ensure that students do not enter mosques during Ramadhan.
An exiled rights group, the World Uyghur Congress, warned the policy would force “the Uighur people to resist (Chinese rule) even further.” “By banning fasting during Ramadhan, China is using administrative methods to force the Uighur people to eat in an effort to break the fasting,” said group spokesman Dilshat Rexit in a statement.
Participants at the 180,000-strong Tiananmen Square Massacre Candlelight Vigil in Hong Kong hold up candles and posters, commemorating the victims. (Sung Pi Lung/The Epoch Times)
Tiananmen Square Massacre Candlelight Vigil in Hong Kong 180,000-Strong
By Angela Wang
7 June 2012
Calls for democracy in China resounded at Hong Kong’s Victoria Park as more than 180,000 attended the yearly candlelight vigil in memory of the 1989 massacre of student protesters on Tiananmen Square. In the crowd were survivors, politicians, students, and residents from both Hong Kong and mainland China. (read more)
China Suspends Officials in Forced-Abortion Case
By Josh Chin
15 June 2012
BEIJING—Chinese authorities have suspended family planning officials who forced a woman to have a late-term abortion after news of the case sparked a torrent of outrage online and refocused attention on abuses carried out under the country's one-child policy (read more).
by The Washington
Post July 12, 2009
reports of deadly riots and repression in a far-off region of China sounded
familiar last week, it's because you have heard them -- or something much like
them -- before. The uprising by ethnic Uighurs in the city of Urumqi
in Xinjiang province was the third such popular protest by Uighurs in the past
20 years, and it looked a lot like the trouble that broke out last year in Tibet. What
began as a peaceful protest by an aggrieved minority turned to rioting after
police responded harshly. Then followed a brutal crackdown by security forces,
accompanied by revenge attacks by members of China's Han majority. (Read More)
ETHNIC STRIFE Burned wreckage on July 6 in Urumqi, in Xinjiang. On July 5, Uighurs rioted against the dominant Han in western China, igniting the deadliest ethnic violence in decades.