Freiburg, Germany: The President of the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) Dr Lobsang Sangay spoke at a public-talk event organized by the Tibet Forderkreis eV, a non-profit organization known for its support for humanitarian and refugee aid for the Tibetan community in exile, at the Tibet Kailash House yesterday.
Addressing the past and the present critical condition in Tibet, the President added that Tibet’s future matters beyond the borders of Tibet and its people.
Tibet, which has been designated as the third pole of the world, and the water tower of Asia is home to 46000 glaciers and the largest reserve of fresh water outside the polar regions. The President expressed concerns over the environmental health of Tibet, the fast melting of the Tibet’s glaciers, China’s damming of the rivers and mineral extraction in Tibet threatening Tibet’s ecosystem, which more than a billion people across Asia is depended on.
Apart from the environmental significance, the President added that the Tibet issue is an issue of Human Rights, Justice, Democracy and truth. And these, he added are the values of the world, of Germany and its people, and that these values must be preserved.
Referring to a recent incident from his visit to Madrid where the Chinese embassy expressed their discontentment and threatened the organizers of the International Trade Fair of Madrid (IFEMA) for giving him the platform to speak. “No matter how much pressure the Chinese government put on me, I will show up because truth, Justice, democracy and human rights must prevail and we have no choice,” said the President.
He further added the Chinese government’s attempts to prevent anyone from speaking about Tibet in itself is an indicator of the severe repression in Tibet that is ongoing. The President informed the audience of the recent self-immolation by a barely 23-year-old Tibetan making him the 153rd Tibetan to protest against the Chinese government’s repressive policies.
Juxtaposing the Belt and Road Initiative with the Chinese government use of the road built in Tibet on the promise of bringing peace and prosperity to bring in guns, tanks and army, the President added that “ this is how we lost our country” and that Tibet’s past must be a lesson to be learned from.
The address also touched upon the Tibetan Buddhism and its role and the working of the CTA and the initiatives being undertaken by the CTA.
The President in his address thanked Wilfried Pfeffer, founder and director of the Tibet Kailash House and the founding member of the Tibet Forderkreis eV, and the members of the Tibet Kailash House. He further added that their presence at the event mirrors their support for Tibet and its people sending a strong message to the Tibetans in Tibet that there are people who stand with “non-violence, justice and us.”
The President is scheduled for interactions with media, upon completion of which the president will leave for Washington DC.
-Filed by Tenzin Lhakmon, Communication Officer, Sikyong Office