Tibetans in Switzerland and Liechtenstein march to the UN on International Human Rights Day

Geneva: Tuesday, 10th December 2019: Marking the 71st International Human Rights Day, Tibetans in Switzerland and Liechtenstein gathered in front of the United Nations building in Geneva to highlight the dismal human rights situation in China occupied Tibet.

Around 500 Tibetans participated in the march holding Tibetan national flags and placards, calling attention to the dismal human rights record in Tibet and urging China to enter into dialogue with the representative of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. The march began from the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights located at Palais des Wilson and culminated at the headquarters of the United Nations, Place des Nations, Geneva.
While addressing the gathering, Representative Chhimey Rigzen, Tibet Bureau- Geneva, spoke about China’s continued violations of the basic human rights of Tibetans. He highlighted China’s relentless repressive policies violating the right of Tibetans to freely and openly practice their religion and China’s aggressive interference in the centuries-old Tibetan religious practice of reincarnation to gain political control.

Further, Representative Chhimey Rigzen acknowledged the unwavering courage and determination of Tibetans inside Tibet in their quest for freedom and justice even in the face of the Chinese government’s brutal repression. Noting the grave situation, he called for continued united efforts from Tibetans living in exile, particularly the Tibetans in Switzerland and Liechtenstein, to ensure that the voice of the Tibetans within Tibet reaches the UN and the international community.

Samdho Jampa, member of Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile from Europe, Réné Longet, former mayor and representative of Swiss-Tibetan friendship Association, Gyaltag Phuntsok, executive member of Swiss Tibetan Women Association, also addressed the gathering.
Meanwhile, Tsamda Norbu, the President of the Tibetan Community in Switzerland and Liechtenstein, accompanied by staff members of the Tibet Bureau met a representative from the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and submitted an appeal letter addressed to Ms. Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. The appeal letter urged for the High Commissioner’s immediate intervention in the ongoing human rights violations of Tibetans by the Chinese government. It urged the High Commissioner to play a pivotal role in ensuring that the human rights of Tibetans are protected by stopping China from further violating the human rights of Tibetans.

It was 30 years ago, on the International Human Rights Day of 10th of December in 1989 that His Holiness the Dalai Lama was presented with the world`s most distinguished peace award, the Nobel Peace Prize. To the Tibetan people in general and, in particular, to the people across the world who cherish democracy, freedom, peace, and compassion, it was a perfect moment to exalt the incomparable deeds of His Holiness the Dalai Lama with joy, devotion, and elation.

This is a day of outstanding significance and in places across the world, people are commemorating this festive occasion with the remembrance of His Holiness the Dalai Lama`s deeds. Tibetans in exile celebrated the 30th anniversary of the iconic 1989 conferment of Nobel Peace Prize to His Holiness the Dalai Lama in full swing.

-Filed by Tibet Bureau in Geneva
Nyima Arya

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