07/22/2008, 00.00
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25,000 Tibetans to protest on August 8

by Nirmala Carvalho
Tibetan groups are launching the initiative to remind the world about the Chinese repression and colonial domination in their country, the killing of over one million Tibetans, the 6,000 monasteries destroyed. They are asking politicians, athletes, and the Olympic Committee for concrete initiatives.

New Delhi (AsiaNews) - More than 25,000 Tibetans will gather in New Delhi on August 8, to remember the Chinese occupation of Tibet in conjunction with the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympics. Meanwhile, the Tibetan Youth Congress (TYC) and other pro-Tibet groups have set a first appointment for July 28 in New Delhi, to launch an open-ended "hunger strike for Tibet" and other initiatives.

A nonviolent public protest has also been set for August 7.

International attention seems to be focused on the pollution in Beijing, and not as much on Tibet. The TYC recalls that the Chinese military repression continues, that thousands of Tibetans have been detained for political crimes, that Beijing has kidnapped and kept hidden for years the Panchen Lama designated by the Dalai Lama, and is not permitting international observers to visit Tibet, that the rich mineral resources of the region are exploited for the advantage of the mainland, leaving Tibetans with nothing but increasing pollution.

For this reason, they are asking world leaders to boycott the opening ceremony of the Olympics, are asking the athletes who win medals to remember Tibet at the Olympic podium, and are asking the international Olympic Committee to become informed about the situation in the region, recalling that "colonialist" China has killed more than one million Tibetans, razed more than 6000 monasteries to the ground, and fostered the immigration of ethnic Han Chinese, relegating the Tibetans to a minority role and a secondary position in their own land.

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