Tibet: Tibetans protest at the 41st session of the Human Rights Council
Tibetans from Switzerland and Liechtenstein took to the streets on Friday to express their frustration with the ongoing Human Rights Council in Geneva, which in their opinion is favoring the Chinese narrative and does not reflect the deteriorating human rights situation in Tibet. Representatives of the diaspora urged the High Representative Michelle Bachelet to address the issue and to persuade the Chinese government to engage in dialogue with the Dalai Lama.
The article below was published by Tibet.net
The Tibetan community in Switzerland and Liechtenstein organized a demonstration paralleling the ongoing 41st session of the UN Human Rights Council in front of Palais des Nations, on Friday, 28 June.
Tibetans carrying national flags, shouting slogans calling for “Human Rights in Tibet” and “Release of all Political Prisoners in Tibet” among other slogans highlighted the deteriorating human rights situation in Tibet. They called upon the UN member states and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to hold China accountable for human rights violations in Tibet.
Addressing the gathering, Representative Chhimey Rigzen briefed about the ongoing Tibet’s human rights advocacy efforts in Geneva and called for more of collective efforts and initiatives from all Tibetans in advancing Tibet agenda at the international platform.
“The human rights situation inside Tibet continued to be concerning, however, UN member states under the influence of China’s distorted facts and its economic ties, they are silent on Tibet,” said Representative Chhimey.
Mr. Norbu Tsamda, President of the Tibetan Community in Switzerland & Liechtenstein, expressed deep disappointment over High Commissioner’s opening statement for the 41stUN Human Rights council’s session. He said, “There was no mention of the critical human rights situation in Tibet. Your silence on Tibet in the opening statement of the 41st UN human rights council session doesn’t reflect the true situation in Tibet.”
Later in the afternoon, Mr. Norbu Tsamda, President of the Tibetan Community, handed over an appeal letter to the Office of Ms. Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. Highlighting the deteriorating human rights situation in Tibet the appeal letter called the Office of High Commissioner to “press China to open Tibet and give unfettered access for independent observers and reporters to know the realities in Tibet.” The appeal further urged the High Commissioner to call China to “enter into substantive dialogue with envoys of His Holiness the Dalai Lama.”
Ms. Tenzin Wangmo, Representative of Swiss-Tibetan Friendship Association, Ms. Dikyi Santamaria, President of the Swiss-Tibetan Women Association and Ms. Tenzin Dechen, Representative of Europe Tibetan Youth Association also addressed the gathering and expressed their concern over the abysmal human right situation in Tibet.
The 41st regular session of the UN Human Rights Council began earlier this week and concludes on 12 July.
Photo courtesy of Tibet.net