3 Nov 2011

Tibet: please support petition

The situation in Tibet is once again very dire as opposed to just dire. I spent a month in Tibet in the early 80s and have tried to highlight and support that country ever since. I was hugely fortunate to have a chance to travel independently and meet some Tibetans although even then talking was difficult.

Avaaz are telling the story of 20 year old Tenzin Wangmo who walked out of her nunnery, covered herself in petrol and set herself on fire while pleading for a “free Tibet”.  She died  and in the past month, seven other monks have self-immolated to protest a growing Chinese crackdown on the peaceful Tibetan people.

Avaaz writes: These tragic acts are a desperate cry for help -- machine gun toting Chinese security forces are beating and disappearing monks, laying siege to monasteries, and even killing elderly people defending them -- all in an effort to suppress Tibetan rights. China severely restricts access to the region. But if we can get key governments to send diplomats in, break the blackout, and expose this growing brutality, we could save lives.

We have to act fast -- this horrific situation is spiraling out of control behind a censorship curtain. Over and over we have seen that when diplomats themselves bear witness to atrocities, they are motivated to act, and increase political pressure. Let’s build a massive petition to the six leaders with the most influence in Beijing to send a mission to Tibet and speak out against the repression. Sign the urgent petition and send this to everyone: http://www.avaaz.org/en/save_tibetan_lives/?vl

Tibetans are unable to practice their religion freely - just downloading a photograph of the Dalai Lama can land a Tibetan in prison. And it is getting worse: columns of Chinese troops have blockaded the largest monasteries and are abducting monks in "patriotic re-education" programmes.

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