Thursday, June 19, 2008

Tibet 1959: after 49 years, 49 days away

Free Tibet 2008:

With the start of the Beijing Olympics only 49 days away, SFT HQ is stepping up our Olympic campaign efforts. To ensure that you are kept up to date with news, analysis, and ways to participate in creative, strategic and effective actions for Tibet leading up to and during the Games, we are excited to launch SFT's Olympics website:

Visit now and watch our new SFT Olympics Campaign video, a moving account of what is at stake inside Tibet and the power we have – as Tibetans, supporters, and people of conscience – to make history for Tibet at this crucial time.

We are about to enter the most critical stage in our organization's history, and indeed in the history of the Tibet movement, and we need your help.

After you watch SFT's new Olympics Campaign video, download it and share it with your friends and family. Post it on your Facebook page, send it to all your email contacts and encourage everyone you know to donate to SFT in this Olympic year.

With your help, we will raise the necessary funds to seize this once-in-a-lifetime Olympic opportunity to make history for Tibet.

Make a donation right now:

As the Chinese government prepares to launch its single-largest propaganda exercise ever, all of us at SFT are working with ever-greater intensity to keep the world's attention focused on the Tibetan people's cries for freedom. Tibetans continue to speak out despite the terrible risks, and need you in this critical time.

Please support our efforts by donating to SFT's Olympics action fund now.

This is the most urgent time to support SFT as we effectively expend tremendous physical and financial resources toward realizing our goal – and the goal of the Tibetan people – human rights and freedom for Tibet.

This truly is the time. With your help, Tibet will be free.

Lhadon Tethong

P.S. Please visit today. We've designed it as a one-stop resource for everything related to SFT's Olympics campaign, featuring a media center, a photo and video gallery, resources and tools to help you get involved and take action, and streamlined information and analysis from SFT's website and leading blogs.

Updated: 19th June 2008

International Campaign for Tibet

The still unfolding demonstrations and unrest in Tibet are bigger than anything since the Dalai Lama fled in 1959.
After 49 years of rule by China, Tibetans throughout the country are showing how they feel about the “progress” China has brought. And it is a resounding vote of "no confidence." ... read on >>>

Update: 19th Mar 2008

(...) There are now many reports of Tibetans being killed in the streets of Lhasa by security personnel. And many reports of Tibetans damaging Chinese stores. We now have photos of security vehicles overturned and in flames. ... more >>>

Updated: Mar 15th 2008

CNN: "Clashes leave 10 dead in Tibet" (includes video material)

Violent protests in the Tibetan capital Lhasa have left at least 10 people dead as protesters calling for an end to Chinese rule in the region planned more demonstrations in India and Tibet. (...) "The victims are all innocent civilians, and they have been burnt to death," an official with the regional government told Xinhua.

Indian police surrounded the Tibetan community in old Delhi Friday, effectively sealing it to prevent anyone from going in or out after a Friday night protest, a spokesman for the Tibetan Youth Congress told CNN. Police arrested 61 people at the protest Friday night, including four who demonstrated at the Chinese embassy, said Youth Congress spokesman Komchok Yarphel. Yarphel also said that protesters planned to restart a march from the northern Indian city of Dharmsala to the Tibet border that was forcibly stopped Thursday by Indian authorities. Those 100 protesters have been jailed for 14 days, but Yarphel said another 100 will begin the march from Dehra, where the first attempt ended after only three days and 75km. Police have banned the march and are likely to stop it again. The protesters planned to reach the border for a confrontation with Chinese authorities in time for the opening of the Beijing Olympics in August. Dharmsala is home to the Tibetan exile government and the Dalai Lama.

Meanwhile, five days of protests in the Tibetan capital of Lhasa turned violent late Friday, and at least 10 people were killed, the state-run Chinese news agency Xinhua reported, quoting the Tibetan government. Those protests began Monday when hundreds of monks rallied on the 49th anniversary of a failed uprising against Beijing that forced the Dalai Lama into exile. Police used gunfire and tear gas to quell the Lhasa protest, according to witnesses, human rights groups and Xinhua. A main market in Lhasa, Tromsikhang Market, was set on fire, said Kate Saunders, a spokeswoman for the International Campaign for Tibet. The market has many Chinese traders, and she said Tibetans have been concerned about the influx of Chinese into the area. Some ethnic Tibetan shopkeepers hung scarves outside their stores in an effort to spare them from the protesters' wrath, a witness reported.

Chinese bloggers and U.S.-based human rights groups said Chinese security forces had sealed off the three main monasteries around Lhasa after the violence broke out. The bloggers also said police wearing armored vests were moving toward Lhasa in armored personnel carriers. (...) CNN sought permission to enter Tibet on Friday, but the permission had not been granted by Friday evening Beijing time. CNN reporting on Tibet was being blacked out Friday in mainland China. Chinese authorities blamed the Dalai Lama for the unrest, but the Dalai Lama said the protesters were simply acting out of "deep-rooted resentment" of the Chinese government. (...) >>>

Dated: 15th Mar 2008

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