Geneva: A group of four Tibetans in Switzerland concluded a week-long peace march in Geneva, on 30th June, coinciding with the opening of the 44th session of the UN Human Rights Council session.
The team led by Tsangmada Lobsang Dhargyal and joined by Dorjee Ngodrup, Rangpoyamatsang Tenam and Droldoernangmi Tashi Namgyal began the peace march from Parliament building in Bern, capital city of Switzerland, on 25th June 2020, to raise awareness about the human rights violations in Tibet and to make China accountable for its violations.
Carrying Tibetan, Switzerland and Indian National flags, the peace marchers covered around 160 km walking. While crossing through Bern, Fribourg, Lausanne, and Geneva, tri-lingual pamphlets titled “China lies, people die. Enough is Enough. Make China Accountable” were also distributed. The pamphlet detailed unprecedented challenging times due to the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic originated from Wuhan in China, highlighted human rights violations in Tibet since China’s illegal occupation of Tibet and urged for Boycotting Made in China.
They were warmly received by Tibetan communities and friends of Tibet. Some Tibetans and members of Swiss-Tibetan Friendship Association also joined the march for short distances to share solidarity.
On arrival in Geneva, the peace marchers were warmly received in front of UN Office on Geneva by Representative Chhimey Rigzen accompanied by the staffs of the Tibet Bureau Geneva, Sonam Therchin and Thinlay Chukki along with Bhayen Trogey, president of Tibetan Community in Geneva, Norbu Chhiring, President of Tibetan Community-Wädenswill and communities members.
In coordination with the Tibet Bureau Geneva, the peace marchers accompanied by staff of the Tibet Bureau Geneva Thinlay Chukki 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 is available here.
The appeal letter called upon UN to take all necessary measures to hold China accountable for its human rights violations in Tibet and press China to allow independent fact-finding missions into Tibet and also to include Tibet in the High Commissioner’s itinerary plans for visit to China. While expressing support and join the recent call by 50 UN independent experts and from 30 UN Special Procedures Mandate Holders, the peace marchers have urged the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and all Member-States to hold a special session and establish special rapporteur with country mandate on China’s human rights violations in Tibet, Hong Kong, East Turkistan and other regions under China.
Earlier this month, a 45-year old, Tsering Wangdue resident of Switzerland concluded his solo peace march from Winterthur, Zurich in northern Switzerland to Geneva on 5th June 2020, to raise awareness about the human rights violations in Tibet and to make China accountable for its violations.