In light of the ongoing self-immolations in Tibet, the number of which has now reached a tragic 111 (20 of them have been 18 years old or younger), we believe that the EU should have a stronger role in trying to solve the growing confrontation. For this reason Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE) will organise the conference “Tears of Tibet: the impact of Chinese policies on human rights and the environment in Tibet” and will take a closer look at the role of the European Union. The seminar will be held on Wednesday April 10 at the European Parliament in the Belgian capital of Brussels.
Tensions between the local Tibetans and the Chinese state have increased since the Tibetan uprising against the Chinese rule in 2008. Up to now we have unfortunately not seen any significant signs that the Chinese state is looking to achieve a genuine peace settlement.
The conference aims to review EP action for a peaceful solution and to discuss how to change the approach/strategy in order to help the Tibetan people. We will invite experts on Tibet who have also participated in the conference in previous years.
Because ALDE has organized it for the past two years, we believe that the tradition should continue. From the feedback that we have received from different NGO’s that represent Tibetan interest, this conference has had an enormous effect and upheld hope for a better future for the Tibetan communities.
- 15:00 – 15:15
Welcoming address and introduction – MEP Kristiina Ojuland
- 15:15 – 15:30
Ms Kate Saunders, Director of Communications, International Campaign for Tibet. Presentation of ICT’s latest report on self-immolations “Storm in the Grasslands: self-immolations in Tibet and Chinese policy”.
- 15:30 – 15:45
Ms Katia Buffetrille, Ethnologist and tibetologist, École pratique des hautes études. Focus on self-immolations and freedom of religion from a human rights perspective.
- 15:45 – 16:00
Mr Roy Strider, Estonian writer, human rights and social justice activist. Focus on the dangers and effects of radicalisation in the Tibetan struggle for independence.
- 16:00 – 16:15
Mr Tenzin Norbu, Head of Environment Desk, Central Tibetan Administration. Focus on environmental issues.
- 16:15 – 16:45
EEAS official (tbc)
Q&A – Open discussion
- 16:45 – 17:00
Concluding remarks and recommendations – MEP Leonidas Donskis
More info on http://www.alde.eu