Washington DC: The 17th conference of overseas Chinese Democracy activists was held from 5 -7 November 2021 led by noted Chinese democracy activist Wei Jingsheng. The conference was held virtually due to the challenges posed by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The conference was also attended by Tsultrim Gyatso, Chinese liaison officer at the Office of Tibet, Washington DC. He explained the issue of Tibet to the participants and answered questions posed by the participating Chinese dissidents and democracy activists.
The three-day conference deliberated on how to enhance and amplify the movement for democracy among the general Chinese public and discussed the developments in China’s political and societal sphere.
Wang Dan, a prominent Chinese dissident and a student activist who took part in the Tiananmen Square protest, as well as Yan Jiaqi, scholar and political advisor, also attended the conference. They spoke about political changes taking place in China, China’s relations with international bodies and countries, promotion of democracy in China, and analysed the democracy movement within China.
Chinese liaison officer Tsultrim Gyatso began his address by updating the grim political situation prevailing inside Tibet under China’s brutal policies. He spoke about China’s imposition of Mandarin in Tibetan schools right from kindergarten, and condemned China’s program of patriotic reeducation in Tibetan monasteries, forcibly reducing the number of Tibetan monks and nuns in violation of religious freedom rights, and also the rampant violation of Tibet’s environment by excessive damming on Tibetan rivers such as Brahmaputra endangering the livelihood of the people living in downstream regions.
Tsultrim Gyatso further spoke about the four principal commitments of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the contribution and efforts of His Holiness towards reconciliation with Chinese nationals. He said the fact that there is an increasing number of Chinese supporting the Tibetan movement is an outcome of His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s efforts. He also discussed the Middle Way Approach proposed by His Holiness the Dalai Lama to resolve the Sino-Tibetan conflict which was later unanimously adopted as an official resolution by the Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile. He urged the Chinese democracy activists and Chinese Tibet supporters to counter the Chinese government’s false propaganda on His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Central Tibetan Administration, and clarify the genuine stand of the Tibetan people to the general Chinese public.