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2011. július 9./Dennis Barbion, Belgium/TibetPress

Wednesday 6th July 2011 was the 76th birthday of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, the spiritual leader of the Tibetan people. The Chinese-Tibetan Friendship Society Europe (CTFSE), an international association that was founded in June last year, has organised a celebration in Brussels. About 175 people in total participated in the celebration: Tibetans, Chinese dissidents, a Mongolian representative and Belgian Tibet supporters.

Mrs. Mona Zhimin Tang, a Chinese political artist, a former Tian An Men student and human rights activist now living in the West, welcomed everyone and did the presentation that evening. She expressed her appreciation for everyone who participated in the celebration. She told it was an important day and asked the audience to offer a khata to the throne with a picture of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, to express respect for the former Nobel Peace Prize Winner. 

Afterwards, Mrs. Zhimin Tang wished His Holiness a very happy birthday and a long life on behalf of everyone who attended the meeting. She hoped that the Dalai Lama may return to a free Tibet soon. "Although this is a birthday party, so a festive and happy occasion, we may not forget the millions of people who died during more than 60 years of oppression by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). Therefore I ask one minute of silence now to commemorate all the victims of the Chinese government."

Mr. Lobsang Wangdu, Chairman of the CTFSE, welcomed everyone. "The association only exists one year now, and the aim is to establish a good relationship and understanding among the Tibetan and Chinese people, with respect for each other and a good coorperation between the two. We hope upon a growing interest in the future and we are open for all comments and suggestions."

The next speaker was Mr. Xi Hai Ming, a well-known Mongolian activist, currently living in Germany. "The Tibetan and Mongolian people have the same religion, Lamaism. We are all victims of the Chinese government and suffer under the genocide. We hope that one day the light of His Holiness the Dalai Lama will shine over Tibet, and that Tibet and China will be free. I have a deep respect for our Tibetan and Chinese brothers and sisters who fight for freedom."

Mr. Xi Hai Ming also presented the European Council of Mongolia-Uyghur-Tibet-China (ECMUTC), a brand new organisation of which he´s the Chairman and that is launched during the celebration. "In the past, some groups have worked already together, but one organisation for both the Mongolian, Uyghur, Tibetan and Chinese people, is unique. This is very symbolic. We all have to work together for freedom and we hope to have much support." After the speech, a drink has been offered to Mr. Xi Hai Ming, a tradition between Mongolians and Tibetans.

Mrs. Liao Tian Qi is a Chinese writer and President of the Independent Chinese PEN Center. In the past she was based in Washington where she has worked together with the International Campaign for Tibet. "I´m deeply moved by seeing so much people here together showing their respect to His Holiness the Dalai Lama." Mrs. Liao Tian Qi has translated the book "Fire under the Snow" by Palden Gyatso in Chinese. "Palden Gyatso has spent 33 years in a Chinese prison. He lost everything, his youth, his freedom, really everything. When he was released, he escaped to Nepal. I found it very important to spread his message among the Chinese people as well." "One day, the Chinese leader will be represented by the people, and he will kneel down for the Tibetan people, like Willy Brandt kneeled down in front of the Monument in Warsaw in 1970."

Mrs. Mona Zhiming Tang added that when she lived in The Netherlands, she has visited many places. "Each time I said sorry to the Tibetans I met there, and I hope that all Chinese will do that one day."

Mr. Pan Yong Zhong is a member of the Federation for Democratic China and Vice-Chairman of the Chinese-Tibetan Friendship Society Europe, responsible for the section in Germany. He said "We, Chinese, also have much respect for the Dalai Lama."

Mrs. Rigzin Choedon Genkhang of the Office of Tibet in Brussels spoke briefly about the life of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and said that we need to show our respect for him as he promotes human values. "Here we can celebrate the birthday of the Dalai Lama, but this is not possible in Tibet. Best of all is to follow His Holiness´ guidance. We hope to restore freedom in Tibet soon." Afterwards, Mrs. Rigzin Choedon Genkhang read the official statement of the Tibetan government in exile.

Mr. Andrew Swan is the Programma Manager of the Unrepresented Nations and People´s Organisation (UNPO). "Today we mark the creation of an important organisation, the European Council of Mongolia-Uyghur-Tibet-China. This is a key moment in the campaign for the human rights, freedom of expression, and respect for multiculturalism in China." "For two decades representatives of East Turkistan, Tibet and Inner Mongolia have been members of the UNPO. Over the years we have worked with our members to raise awareness of the situation facing democracy activists, human rights campaigners and ordinary citizens trying to go about their daily lifes under the communist regime of the People´s Republic of China." "To campaign peacefully for change or to act in protest against such policies is to place yourself before a security apparatus that has become more ruthless than before." "You can place no confidence in a judicial system that is intended to protect the State and by extension the interest of the Communist Party. Look to the case of Ershiddin Israel, an Uyghur repatriated to China. China´s arm of law extend to Kazakhstan and ensured that, like so many others, he is likely to disappear, detained, probably tortured only coming to light when he appears before a perfunctory trial that will have him sentenced, if not to death, then to lengthy prison terms on charges of so-called splittism or terrorism based on evidence that would not stand in any true court of justice. These are all institutional tools designed to maintain the power of the CCP." "UNPO always makes the distinction that it is Beijing that drives the policies against its members, not Chinese citizens that have themselves such a rich and diverse culture that they cannot be considered simply as a whole. Singlehandedly, without remorse and with only a cold view to a uniform future, the CCP is destroying China´s cultural treasures." "His Holiness the Dalai Lama said only one month on the issue of winning for Tibet meaningful autonomy, `we should resolve the issue through friendship and mutual coorperation´. I would like to think that today marks a moment when we can say that we are putting his words into action, here at the heart of Europe, and not just for Tibetans but for Mongolians, Uyghurs and all the nations and peoples of China." 

Mr. Lobsang Nyima is the Liaison Officer specially appointed for relations with Chinese people for the Offices of Tibet in Europe, Geneva, London, Brussels and Paris. He is based in Geneva. After welcoming everybody, Mr. Lobsang Nyima first mentioned how proud he was to be a Tibetan. "We have a deep respect for everyone who has compassion in the heart. In fact, everyone has the seed of compassion in the heart but this is not always shown or developed. Both Chinese and Tibetans need more understanding among each other. This is not only the responsibility of the government but it´s the duty of everyone, also of all Tibetans." Mr. Lobsang Nyima then asked the audience if they knew why the Tibetans were respected and admired worldwide. "Because of their compassion and love, one of the most valuable things of Tibetans, a most precious treasure. This may sound weak, but this is our strength." "The Tibetan culture is deeply linked to and influenced by Buddhism and its principles of tolerance, altruism, love and compassion. All tibetans should make efforts to preserve it and pass it on to the next generations. Also when you meet people from other countries, remember this and remember also that you represent not only yourself, but six million people." Mr. Lobsang Nyima spoke about his personal experiences and how, when travelling around the world, the customs on seeing his Tibetan passport never control him or his luggage while they do control some other Europeans." "You all came here today to pay homage and to show respect to the Dalai Lama. Do you think the Dalai Lama really wants a birthday celebration? What he really needs, is us to do what he is telling us to do, to follow his directives, his advice is the best way to show respect to him."

At the end of the speeches, Mrs. Zhimin Tang gave some more information about the European Council of Mongolia-Uyghur-Tibet-China, the organisation of which she is the Secretary. "This new association is an important symbol, it´s an initiative of some Tibetan, Chinese, Uyghur and Mongolian human rights activists, and inspired by the Chinese-Tibetan Friendship Society Europe. We hope that all groups work together, exchange information and communicate good with each other. The Chinese-Tibetan Friendship Society Europe is founded last year, but the suffering of the Mongolian and Uyghur people is the same. The Tibetan people are an inspiration to us, Chinese, they give us a good example and show us the way of a non-violent and peaceful approach. The suffering of both Tibetans, Mongolian, Uyghur and Chinese are the same, so we need to work together."   

The board of the European Council of Mongolia-Uyghur-Tibet-China is:

- Mr. Xi Hai Ming (Chairman, Mongolian)

- Mr. Lobsang Wangdu (Vice-Chairman, Tibetan)

- Mr. Bahtiyar Nasir (Vice-Chairman, Uyghur)

- Mrs. Mona Zhimin Tang (Secretary, Chinese)

- Mrs. Huan Xue Wen (Treasurer, Chinese)

- Mr. Gairatjan Rozi (Coordinator, Uyghur).


The goal of the ECMUTC is to set up a platform for the people of Mongolia, East Turkistan, Tibet and China, to learn more about each others personal and cultural background, to discuss the common problems and to find out a way to freedom together. Important is to respect and to learn about each others cultural identity and language. The slogan of the ECMUTC is Freedom-Equality-Love-Culture-​Nature-Peace.

About the colours in the logo: white for Tibet, yellow for China, light blue for the Uyghur, and deep blue for Mongolia.




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