EU presses China on whereabouts of detained monks of Kirti Monastery

DHARAMSHALA: Echoing concerns raised by the United Nations over enforced disappearances in Tibet last week, the European Union officials today urged China to give full information on the whereabouts of over 300 detained monks of Kirti Monastery in northeastern Tibet.

 “The EU called on the Chinese authorities to provide full information on the fate and whereabouts of the persons who have disappeared from Kirti Monastery,” an EU delegation in Beijing for the 30th EU-China Dialogue said in a statement today.

 “The two sides reviewed recent developments in human rights and had an in-depth discussion on the rights of minorities. This looked in particular at the situation of ethnic Tibetans, Uyghurs, and Mongols,” the statement said.

 The EU side also raised the exercise of freedom of religious belief and practice, including for members of unregistered churches, and for practitioners of non-theistic beliefs.

 There were extensive discussions on the rule of law, freedom of expression, including freedom of the press, the situation of human rights lawyers and defenders, it said.

 The EU side sought further information about reports of torture of people in detention.  It repeated its call for the reform of the Re-education through Labor system.

 The EU side expressed its concerns about the use of forced disappearances and extra-legal detentions.

 It stressed the importance of an independent judiciary and protection of the rights of lawyers to exercise their profession.

 The EU also raised a number of individual cases of concern.

 “The dialogue allowed the two sides to have a detailed and searching exchange of views on a wide range of human rights issues. It provided an opportunity to express concerns about the implementation of international human rights standards in China and the EU,” it said.

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UN asks China to account for whereabouts of 300 detained monks of Kirti Monaste

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