Beernem, Belgium: Tibetan Circle of Friends (Tibetaanse-Vlaamse Vriendenkring), based in Belgium, has recently written to the members of the European Parliament urging greater cooperation and solidarity with other concerned governments over the issue of Tibet.
The letter, undersigned by Dennis Barbion, President of Tibetan- Belgium has been sent to the President of European Parliament and to the European President Mr. Herman Van Rompuy, but also to:
– Member of the European Parliament (MEP) Mr. Thomas Mann, President of the Tibet Intergroup in the EP
– all the Chairmen of the different political groups in the EP (9 people)
– MEP Mrs. Olinka Harmegnies and MEP Mrs. Kristina Ojuland who have organized conferences about Tibet and the Uyghur people at the EP
– Mr. Elio di Rupo, Prime Minister of Belgium
– Mr. Didier Reynders, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Belgium
We want to share an interesting article with you, written by Edward Lucas, International Editor of The Economist: “The Tibetan Test – The West must unite to resist Chinese bullying against those who meet Tibet’s leaders”.
You can read the article on this link: http://standupfortibet.org/
We agree with this message and urge a greater coorperation and solidarity with other concerned governments over the issue of Tibet.
We find it outrageous that China systematically puts pressure on politicians and governments when for example H.H. the Dalai Lama, Nobel Peace Prize Winner and advocate for freedom and world peace, is visiting Western countries. The Chinese government often proclaim trade sanctions against those countries. This is merely a power game, their manipulation shows no respect and it is not ethical.
Human rights in Tibet and China are violated in a large scale and in different ways, but when human rights violations are raised with the Chinese leaders, the answer is always that these are internal issues. What right does the Chinesegovernment has to interfere with visits by H.H. the Dalai Lama or Sikyong Dr. Lobsang Sangay, political leader of the Tibetan people, in other countries? It only has to do with power and economy.
Western countries, being free and democratic, should have the courage to welcome Tibetan leaders with open arms. Where is their freedom, a foundation of a democratic society, if the law is dictated by the communist dictatorship of the P.R. of China?
It is time that Western countries, Western politicians, Western governments take a stand and raise their voices together against the manipulation and influence by the Chinese government, that has no right at all to do so.
We hope that you discuss this matter with your colleagues and that this subject is also discussed with the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Member States of the European Union.
president of Tibetaanse-Vlaamse Vriendenkring.
by Dennis Barbion in Belgium.
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