November 9, 2010
   Posted in News Flash
Published By Tashi

The Surajkund Statement and Action Plan on Tibet

Adopted by the Sixth International Conference of Tibet Support Groups

Surajkund, India, November 5-7, 2010


Statement

The
Sixth International Conference of Tibet Support Groups was held at
Surajkund in the north Indian state of Haryana from 5 to 7 November
2010.  It was convened by the Core Group for
Tibetan Cause – India, the apex coordinating body of the Tibet
supporters in India, and facilitated by the Department of Information
& International Relations of the Central Tibetan Administration.

The
conference was attended by 258 participants from 57 countries and
consisted of an opening ceremony, five plenary sessions and working
groups on political support, outreach to Chinese, human rights, and
environment and development issues.

During
the inaugural ceremony, His Holiness the Dalai Lama was the Guest of
Honour and the former Deputy Prime Minister of India, Mr. Lal Krishna
Advani, the Chief Guest, while the Kalon Tripa, Prof Samdhong Rinpoche,
delivered the key note address.

Other
international guests present at the inaugural ceremony included Senator
Miriam Defensor Santiago from the Phillippines; Mr Rafael Gimalov,
Member of Parliament from Russia; Major (Retd.), Vijay Singh Mankotia,
former Minister of Himachal Pradesh in India; Mr. Javed Raza, National
General Secretary, Janata Dal (United), India; Dr. Yang Jianli,
President of Initiatives for China, T.N. Chaturvedi, former governor of
Karnataka; Subhash Kashyap, former Secretary-General of the Indian
Parliament; and Ms. Jaya Jaitly, a prominent socialist leader.

 
Participants deliberate during workshops at the 6th Conference of International Tibet Support Groups at Surajkund, near New Delhi, India, on 5-7 November 2010/Photos by Jigme Tsering/Tibetonline TV

The
purpose of the conference was to take stock of efforts in finding a
negotiated solution to the Tibetan issue, discuss the current situation
in Tibet and outline ways for the Tibet groups throughout the world,
including Tibetan NGOs and Tibetan associations, to strengthen their
work in the light of new developments in China and Tibet.

The
previous conferences of Tibet Support Groups have been held in
Dharamsala in 1990, in Bonn in 1996, Berlin in 2000, Prague in 2003,
and Brussels in 2007.  A special TSG conference was also held in India in 2008.

The conference participants:

Reiterated their
position that His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Central Tibetan
Administration are the legitimate representatives of the Tibetan people;

Expressed
their deep admiration for the unwavering determination and commitment
to nonviolence of the Tibetans in Tibet despite the increasingly
stringent controls being exercised by the Chinese authorities;

Recalled
the courage of the Tibetan people who voiced their grievances and
expressed their aspirations through public demonstrations throughout
Tibet in 2008;

Demanded
that the Chinese Government let the world know the whereabouts of the
Panchen Lama and release him as well as all Tibetan political prisoners;

Expressed
their appreciation to His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Kalon Tripa
Samdhong Rinpoche, whose addresses during the inaugural session have
greatly motivated the participants. The conference expresses its
appreciation of Kalon Tripa’s many years of leadership and assistance
to the TSGs;

Welcomed
the reiteration by Indian leader Lal Krishna Advani at the conference
of the Indian support to Tibetan aspirations irrespective of how the
India-China relationship develops;

Applauded
the extraordinary and continued support rendered by the government and
the people of India to the Tibetan people, which has enabled them to
establish a firm foundation for the preservation and promotion of
Tibetan identity in exile;

 
Participants raise their hands to support resolutions passed during the Sixth International Conference of Tibet Support Groups at Surajkund near New Delhi from 5-7 November 2010

 

Committed
to work together to forge a strong international coalition that will
pursue a common strategy for alleviating the plight of the people of
Tibet and ensuring a political solution to the Tibetan issue,
consistent with their United Nations recognised right to
self-determination;

Welcomed
the increased participation by Chinese delegates in the conference and
regarded this as a measure of the growing understanding and support
among the Chinese people about the reality of the Tibetan people and
the Chinese people’s future role towards creating a solution;

Welcomed the noticeable increase in delegates from Southeast Asia;

Welcomed
the democratic election process that is currently underway to elect the
Kalon Tripa (Prime Minister) and members of the Tibetan Parliament by
Tibetans in the free world. We fully support the International Network
of Parliamentarians for Tibet’s initiative to facilitate and ensure
that international election observers are invited to monitor the
Tibetan election process in Nepal. We remain particularly concerned
about Nepalese authorities’ interference in the Tibetan election
process in October 2010. We urge the Nepalese Government to respect the
Tibetan people’s right to participate in their democratic process;

Appreciated
the sympathy and support of the people and Government of Nepal towards
the humanitarian needs of the Tibetans-in-exile so far, as well as,
expressed serious concern about the changing attitude of the Government
of Nepal towards the Tibetan refugees in recent times;

Expressed
condemnation of China’s continued abuse of the human rights of the
Tibetan people in general, including its violation of China’s own
constitutionally-mandated rights, its violation of international treaty
obligations concerning the Tibetan people’s religious and monastic
administration, and its violation of the Tibetan people’s rights to use
the Tibetan language as the medium of instruction in the education
system. The Tibet Support Groups resolved to closely monitor the
situation and develop appropriate actions to highlight these abuses and
make China respect these rights;

Expressed
concern that the People’s Republic of China’s ill-conceived
developmental activities in Tibet are negatively affecting the fragile
ecology with grave implications for the region and the world as a whole
and demanded that these activities be stopped forthwith;

Resolved to make the protection of the Tibetan environment a central part of campaign work for the coming years;

Urged
the governments of conference participants, as well as the United
Nations and other international agencies, to recognise His Holiness the
Dalai Lama and the Tibetan Government-in-Exile as the legitimate
representatives of the Tibetan people and take tangible action towards
a political solution in Tibet, reminded the governments and
parliaments, including the European parliament, of their past
commitments to support Tibet and urged them to take effective steps to
fulfill them;

Agreed,
therefore, to the following Surajkund Action Plan to focus attention of
Tibet Support Groups on a number of areas of major importance.

     

ACTION PLAN

 

POLITICAL SUPPORT

 

I.  OBJECTIVE:  To build up Tibet as a constituent issue in parliaments and governments.

 

We will develop a training
program and resource materials to support the creation of a broader
network of Tibet Groups capable of advocating in local and national
governments on the Tibet issue.  Tibet Groups will be encouraged to participate in coordinated Lobby Days to build relationships and support.  We
will liaise with the International Network of Parliamentarians for
Tibet, involve Tibetan Parliamentarians and officials in our outreach,
and coordinate closely with Tibet Groups already engaged in advocacy in
governments.

 

II.  OBJECTIVE:  To build support for fulfilling the aspirations of the Tibetan people for His Holiness the Dalai Lama to visit in Tibet.

 

We recognize the deep
desire of the Tibetan people to have His Holiness the Dalai Lama to
visit them, and firmly believe that His Holiness is a positive force
for bringing about a peaceful resolution of the Tibetan issue.  Therefore,
we will launch a campaign towards fulfilling the aspirations of the
Tibetan people for His Holiness the Dalai Lama to visit Tibet based on
the fundamental rights of freedom of movement, of association, of
religion and of free speech.

 

HUMAN RIGHTS

 

I.  OBJECTIVE:  To reverse the Chinese Government’s efforts to weaken the status of the Tibetan language.

 

We will create and sustain
international outrage at policy decisions intended to weaken if not
eliminate the Tibetan language in Tibet, through a campaign that uses a
variety of new and creative communication channels to educate and
persuade key audiences who can influence the Chinese Government.  The
campaign will also use methods to convey to Tibetans inside Tibet the
worldwide support for their right to use and enjoy their own language.

 

II.  OBJECTIVE:  To increase awareness of human rights abuses in Tibet through a simple grassroots campaign.

 

We will wear, and encourage others to wear, a white armband on Wednesdays with the word “TIBET” on it.  Everyone who wears the armband will become an ambassador for Tibet as people ask why we are wearing the armband.  We will publicize the campaign through a variety of means, including at the Kalachakra in Washington D.C. In July 2011.

 
Members of the drafting committee during the Sixth International Conference of Tibet Support Groups at Surajkund near New Delhi from 5-7 November 2010

 

ENVIRONMENT & DEVELOPMENT

 

OBJECTIVE:  Create
an alliance with effected communities and build public awareness at the
grassroots level in order to stop the damming of the Mekong/Zachu River.

 

Using people to people
connections at the local and village level, we will help build the
capacity of communities to challenge damming projects on the
Mekong/Zachu River in Tibet.  We will create
greater understanding of the ways in which decisions affecting rivers
in Tibet produce significant consequences in China and other countries.  As the campaign takes root we will consider expanding it to address other rivers flowing from Tibet.

CHINESE OUTREACH

 

OBJECTIVE:  To foster greater understanding between Chinese and Tibetan people through the exchange of personal stories and experiences.

 

We will open up
channels of communication by using personal stories to highlight issues
and concerns that Chinese and Tibetan people share, such as the
environment, freedom of speech and religion, etc.  We
will create positive and simple messages to initiate conversations and
then create spaces for the conversation to continue, including in local
cultural events, friendship groups, and in on-line spaces such as
Common Ground.

Share with your friends










Submit