Enough! Stand Up For Tibet Campaign puts pressure on G20 leaders
Los Angeles. As Celebrities, politicians and other prominent individuals joined over 20,000 people in supporting a campaign calling for coordinated global action to resolve the escalating crisis in Tibet, where 10 young Tibetans have self-immolated since March 2011, Palden Choesto, 35 a nun from Gaden Choeling set herself to fire while the world protested. On the eve of the G20 Summit, Tibetans and their supporters joined a Global Day of Action to launch the Enough! Campaign for Global Intervention to Save Tibetan Lives, an urgent call to world leaders to apply multi-lateral pressure on Chinese President Hu Jintao to ease tensions in Tibet. Unfortunately, for Tibetans in Tibet, they were not afforded the regligous freedom to peacefully protest, and yet another Tibetan needed to selfless self-immolated in protest of China's brutal oppression.
Since 2009, 12 young Tibetans have lit themselves on fire in an unprecedented series of actions protesting Chinese rule and calling for the return of the Dalai Lama to Tibet.
"Today, in cities around the world, Tibetans and our supporters are standing up and saying Enough! Enough to China's violent, military rule over our people, our land, and our culture and enough to world leaders for failing to hold Beijing accountable for its atrocities in Tibet. Inaction now will only lead to the tragic loss of countless more Tibetan lives, and we will not stand by and let that happen." said Tenzin Jigme of the International Tibet Network, a global coalition of more than 180 Tibet Groups, while speaking of yesterday's protests.
In Los Angeles, Southern California Tibetans, LA friends of Tibet, 100 Thousand Poets for Change and Supporters held a protest and candlelight vigil to join in solidarity. The event was an all day event that began at the Chinese Visa office, and moved to the Chinese Consulate of Los Angeles. "We have pledged to Stand up for Tibet and will continue to call on the international community to take action and press Chinese President, Hu Jintao to lift the crackdown and ease tensions in Tibet" said Pema Dolkar, President of the Tibetan Association of Southern California.
Tibetans and supporters across the globe have set November 2nd, as a day of organized peaceful protests to gain the attention of the world in hopes of pressuring Chinese President, Hu Jintao to relax on the military control in the Ngaba region of Tibet. "We can only speculate on what is really going on in Tibet or the motivations behind the recent self-immolations, but whatever the situation is or the motives, for individuals to be pushed to perform such unprecedented acts of self-immolation, it shows that there are religious and political repressions occurring in Tibet." said Thupten Dorjee, Treasurer of the Tibetan Association of Southern California
During the events, Thousands Poets for Peace joined in the campaign and let volunteers from the crowd read poems. A poem written by Tsoltim N. Shakabpa,was read at the event and summarizes many of the feelings felt by the attendees of the event.
VOICES OF TIBET
By Tsoltim N. Shakabpa
Though our countrymen in Tibet
Have been forcibly silenced
I smell the wind in Tibet howl with bitterness at the autocratic rule
I see the yaks of Tibet grunt with anger at the illegal occupation of our land
I hear the babes in Tibet cry out with exasperation at the destruction of our culture
I taste the clouds over Tibet foam with commination at the extinction of our language
I feel the thunder across Tibet roar with frustration over our fruitless efforts to negotiate
I hear the forests of Tibet rustle with vexation at the burglary of our treasures
I see the rivers of Tibet surge with restlessness at the imprisonment of our compatriots
I taste the snowcapped mountains of Tibet melt with rancor at the lies the illegal rulers tell
I smell the sun over Tibet burn with aggravation at the migration of foreigners into our country
I feel the Potala of Tibet scream with impatience for the return of the Dalai Lama to His throne
Though the voices of our countrymen in Tibet have been silenced
My five senses are attuned to the voices of the environment in Tibet
Loudly, clearly and fiercely clamoring for a free and peaceful Tibet
With a democratic system under the auspices of the Dalai Lama
Stand Up For Tibet
List of Self-Immolations in Tibet (12 to date; 11 in 2011 and one in 2009):
- 27 February 2009, Ngaba: Tapey, mid-20s, of Kirti Monastery. Whereabouts unknown.
- 16 March 2011, Ngaba: Lobsang Phuntsok, 20, of Kirti Monastery. Died 17 March 2011.
- 15 August 2011, Kardze: Tsewang Norbu, 29, monk of Nyitso Monastery. Died at the scene, 15 August 2011.
- 26 September 2011, Ngaba: Lobsang Kelsang, 18, monk of Kirti Monastery. In hospital. Lobsang Kunchok, 19 , a monk of Kirti Monastery. In a different hospital to Lobsang Kelsang.
- 3 October 2011, Ngaba: Kelsang Wangchuk, 17, monk of Kirti Monastery. In hospital.
- 7 October 2011, Ngaba: Choephel, 19 former monk of Kirti Monastery. Died 11 October 2011. Khaying, 18, former monk of Kirti Monastery. Died 8 October 2011
- 15 October 2011, Ngaba: Norbu Dramdul, 19, former monk of Kirti Monastery. Taken away, whereabouts unknown.
- 17 October 2011, Ngaba: Tenzin Wangmo, 20, nun of Ngaba Mamae Choekorling Nunnery. Died at the scene, 17 October 2011.
- 25 October 2011, Kardze: Dawa Tsering, 38, monk of Kardze Monastery. Status unknown, possibly being cared for in Kardze Monastery after refusing hospital treatment.
- 3 November 2011 Palden Choetso, set herself to fire