Crucial meet will hear voices
for Tibet's independence
Oct 30 (IANS) Over 500 top Tibetan leaders from India, Nepal,
Europe, the US and other nations will assemble here Nov 17-22
to deliberate on whether to seek complete "independence"
for Tibet instead of "autonomy" under Chinese rule.
is the biggest meeting ever of the exiled Tibetan leadership
to be held at their headquarters in exile at Mcleodganj, near
here. The six-day special meeting has been called by the Tibetan
parliament-in-exile at the behest of Buddhist spiritual leader
the Dalai Lama.
15 MPs in the 43-member exiled parliament are said to be supporters
of the pro-independence stand.
special meeting has great significance. That is because it
is being called after the failure of seven rounds of talks
with China since 2002 and the massive Tibetan uprising all
over Tibet in March-April this year," Karma Yeshi, one
of the young exiled Tibetan MPs, told IANS here.
the meeting to chalk out the course of future Tibetan struggle
is taking place when the exiled community will be completing
50 years of being forced out of Tibet by China in 1959.
these five decades, the Dalai Lama has been propagating a
peaceful resolution of the Tibetan issue through his middle-path
approach - even accepting "genuine autonomy" of
Tibet under Chinese rule instead of complete independence.
others, particularly young Tibetans born outside Tibet and
mostly in India, want the Tibetan struggle to change towards
a more aggressive one. It is this demand that has forced the
Dalai Lama and other Tibetan leaders to sit up and call the
meeting to decide their future course.
support is growing with each passing day. We may not have
the majority in the meeting of 500 people but we will make
sure that we are heard seriously. The only resolution of the
Tibet issue is through a struggle for independence,"
one MP of the exiled parliament said, requesting anonymity.
office of the Dalai Lama, considering the situation inside
Tibet and the situation in the world in general, had asked
the parliament-in-exile during its September session to call
a special meeting as enshrined in article 59 of the charter
of the Tibetans-in-exile.
attending the meeting will include 43 MPs, seven ministers,
70 former MPs and ministers, envoys, representatives of the
Dalai Lama and other officials (about 250), two representatives
each from 10 Tibetan NGOs like the Tibetan Youth Congress
(TYC), Tibetan Women Association (TWA), Gu-Chu-Sum (association
of former Tibetan political prisoners) and others (20), independent
volunteers (50) and representatives of Tibetan religious schools
Holiness and the exiled leadership had made every effort for
the resolution of the Tibet issue. But China has never been
sincere towards the issue and has always been passing time.
Rather, they (China) started criticising His Holiness like
anything, which none of the Tibetans, both in and outside
Tibet, could digest at all," Karma Yeshi pointed out.
this meeting we will discuss the failures and achievements
of the dialogue process since it started in 2002. All Tibetan
representatives, by considering the urgent situation inside
Tibet, could raise ideas and bring any suggestions for the
future of Tibet.
is hard to say that holding one big special meeting will change
the shape of the future of Tibetan struggle. But it will certainly
strengthen future course of our struggle. The issue of Tibet
is very tiny for PRC. But this tiny issue, if not resolved
in time, can cause big problems for China. I am fully committed
to the independence of Tibet and will speak out for it and
do whatever for the same," Karma Yeshi said.
leader and Friends of Tibet activist Tenzin Tsundue said he
had applied to participate in the meeting as one of the 50
am not sure if I will be selected. But the meeting is important
because of what it will discuss and what the opinion of the
majority will emerge as. It will become the basis for our
future course," he said.
inside Tibet started the uprising earlier this year. The message
is very clear as to what the Tibetans want - independence.
We don't have to lobby support for the cause of independence,"
are over 100,000 Tibetans living in exile in India.