Petition: Humanitarian solution for rejected Tibetan asylum seekers languishing in Switzerland since several years.

The Swiss asylum law was revised two years ago with much shorter processes. Under the old law, the asylum applications of more than 300 Tibetan asylum seekers were rejected based on the controversial "Lingua-Analysis" and as they could not provide identity documents from their country-of-origin Tibet, which is occupied by the Communist People's Republic of China. Today, about 250 of these so-called Tibetan "Sans Papiers" are still living in
Switzerland under humanly untenable conditions without any basic rights.

  • Switzerland rules out the possibility of deportation to China. It is assumed that these Tibetans come from India or Nepal, both of which countries do not recognize the UN Refugee Convention. Even worse, Nepal recently signed an extradition treaty with the communist regime in China! So, deportation to India or Nepal is not a viable solution for these Tibetan asylum seekers.

  • Hardship applications from rejected Tibetan asylum seekers are treated highly restrictively and regularly rejected by the SEM despite fulfilling requirements of integration. SEM constantly demands new proof of identity, which can hardly be obtained.

  • Mostly young Tibetan refugees, some with small children, living without a perspective of a self-financed life in asylum shelters spread across Switzerland.

  • Switzerland has to finance these people's basic survival through daily allowances, accommodation costs and social assistance, although they are quite capable of and willing to work and earn their own livelihood.

  • Despite immense legal barriers, many try to integrate in Switzerland through sponsorship networks, Tibetan aid initiatives and the activities of Tibetan organizations, to learn a national language, to engage in voluntary work in the society etc. They are often prevented from doing so and even punished with fines or imprisonment!

Our Appeals:

We call on the Federal Council to remember Switzerland's proven humanitarian tradition towards people who have fled Tibet. This tradition made it possible to take in 1000 Tibetans in the 1960s. They and their compatriots, who number about 7,000 today, are among the best-integrated former refugees in Switzerland! Who does not know a Tibetan in his or her circle of friends and acquaintances? They work, for example, as nursing professionals, doctors, lawyers, bank and insurance specialists, SBB customer advisors, gastronomic entrepreneurs, logistics specialists, heads of social welfare offices, watchmakers, painters, plumbers, artists, teachers, coaching and supervision specialists, cantonal councilors, municipal councilors, infrastructure
managers etc.

For a comparable chance, we call on the Federal Council to find a humane and compassionate viable solution for the approximately 250 Tibetan Sans Papiers in collaboration with the Tibetan organizations and other civil society actors in the form of a pragmatic humanitarian gesture.

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