China has “time on its side” to win over Western opinion to its point of view on the restive regions of Tibet and Xinjiang, a senior official wrote yesterday, vowing with unusually strong language to ignore foreign pressure on human rights.
Zhu Weiqun (朱維群), chairman of the ethnic and religious affairs committee of the top advisory body to the Chinese National People’s Congress, said this would be a difficult task, but that dissenting voices were beginning to be heard in the West.
“As China becomes more involved in international affairs, and as Tibet and Xinjiang further open to the world, more and more Westerners will have an understanding of Tibet and Xinjiang that better accords with reality,” Zhu wrote in a lengthy article on the government-run Web site Tibet.cn.
Zhu said the West would finally “see the real face of the Dalai clique and ‘East Turkestan,’” referring to the Dalai Lama and the militant forces China says operate in Xinjiang.
He said such views in the West was still “weak and isolated,” but they represented “the trend of history.”
Zhu was heavily involved in the past in Beijing’s failed efforts to talk to the Dalai Lama’s representatives.
“Without a doubt this will all need long-term, difficult and careful work, as well as much patience, but time is on China’s side,” he wrote.
China says it has poured money into both the strategically located regions as part of its efforts to bring development to what it says were backward and remote areas and that it respects the rights of people there.
Rights groups and exiles say Beijing tramples on the freedoms of Tibetans, as well as the Muslim Uighur people of Xinjiang, some of whom China says are Islamist extremists who want to set up an independent state called East Turkestan.
Tensions in Tibet and Xinjiang have been running high.
In Tibetan regions of China, including four provinces outside Tibet, more than 120 Tibetans have set themselves on fire since 2009 in protest over Chinese rule. Most have died.
In Xinjiang, more than 100 people have died in violence since April last year, including police, blamed by Beijing on religious extremists and separatists.
Zhu signaled there would be no change in policy.
“What should be developed should be developed, and when stability should be maintained it will be maintained — [we] must totally disregard whatever the West says,” he wrote.
Zhu also criticized foreign leaders who meet the Dalai Lama.
Those who do so should “pay a price,” Zhu said.
“We can only push the West to change its way of thinking if we let them understand that China’s power cannot be avoided ... and that the West’s interests lie in development and maintaining ties with China, not the opposite,” he said.
EVOLVING SITUATION: Of the latest cases, 23 percent were found to be asymptomatic, but the coronavirus strain in Da Nang is more contagious, authorities said A COVID-19 outbreak that began in the Vietnamese city of Da Nang more than a week ago has spread to at least four city factories with a combined workforce of about 3,700, state media reported yesterday. Four cases were found at the plants in different industrial parks in the central city that collectively employ 77,000 people, the Lao Dong newspaper said. Vietnam, praised widely for its decisive measures to combat the novel coronavirus since it first appeared in late January, is battling new clusters of infection having gone for more than three months without detecting any domestic transmissions. Authorities yesterday reported one new
‘COVIDIOTS’: Politicians condemned the protest that came amid surging infections in the country, while a marcher said government-induced fear weakened the body Loudly chanting their opposition to masks and vaccines, thousands of people on Saturday gathered in Berlin to protest against COVID-19 restrictions before being dispersed by police. Police put turnout at about 20,000 — well below the 500,000 organizers had announced as they urged a “day of freedom” from months of virus curbs. Despite Germany’s comparatively low toll, authorities are concerned at a rise in infections over the past few weeks and politicians took to social media to criticize the rally as irresponsible. “We are the second wave,” shouted the crowd, a mixture of hard left and right and conspiracy theorists, as they converged
A cat that went missing on a family holiday on the shores of Loch Lomond, Scotland, has been identified 12 years later. Tortoiseshell-and-white Georgie spent October half term in 2008 with her owners at the Rowardennan campsite, but vanished as they were due to return home to Greater Manchester, England. After a search of the site the Davies family departed without Georgie, hoping the three-year-old microchipped feline would be located by someone. Over the intervening 12 years, she remained close to the Queen Elizabeth Forest Park site, being fed and cared for by campsite staff and holidaymakers. After the COVID-19 pandemic hit and lockdown
Three Micronesian sailors stranded on a remote Pacific island have been found alive and well after a rescue team spotted their giant SOS message written into the sand on a beach. Australian and US military aircraft found the three men on tiny Pikelot island, nearly 200km west of where they had set off. Rescuers said that the men were “in good condition” with no significant injuries. The men had been missing for three days after their 7m skiff ran out of fuel and strayed off course. Authorities in the US territory of Guam raised the alarm on Saturday after the men failed to complete