Wed, Feb 22, 2012 - Page 3 News List

Tsai expresses concerns over escalation in Tibet

By Chris Wang  /  Staff Reporter

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) yesterday expressed concerns over the situation in Tibet amid an intensifying crackdown by Chinese authorities and called on President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) to voice his concerns to Beijing.

DPP Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said she was “heartbroken” about increasing reports of self-immolation protests by Tibetans in her meeting with Dawa Tsering, director of the Tibet Religious Foundation of H.H. The Dalai Lama, yesterday, said Hsiao Bi-khim (蕭美琴), deputy executive director of the party’s New Frontier Foundation think tank.

Tsai reiterated the DPP’s support for the region’s democratic movement and the well-being of Tibetans in Taiwan, Hsiao said.

Tsering handed Tsai a letter from the Dalai Lama, who expressed his recognition and praise of Tsai’s efforts in Taiwan’s democratic development and in the presidential election last month, she said.

According to Hsiao, the Tibetan spiritual leader also explained the current situation and operation of the Tibetan government-in-exile in the letter, saying that he had withdrawn himself from the political decisionmaking process of and had decided to concentrate on religious affairs.

The DPP released a three-point statement on the latest developments in Tibet after the meeting.

The Ma administration should condemn China’s crackdown on Tibetan activists and actively pay attention to the human rights problems in Tibet, as well as the development of the democratic movement in China, rather than staying mum on the issue, the DPP said.

The party expressed gratitude for the Dalai Lama’s interest in Taiwan’s democracy and his care for Taiwanese who suffer from natural disasters.

Human rights and democracy have always been the DPP’s core values, the party added, and those values should and would be included in Taipei’s engagement with Beijing.

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