Last week, as our team landed in Geneva, we started off with encouraging news. The UN High Commissioner, Prince Zeid al-Hussein, said in his opening statement at the Human Rights Council in Geneva that the deaths of Liu Xiaobo and Tenzin Delek “shocked many around the world”, and many such as Tashi Wangchuk are in various forms of deprivation of liberty on questionable grounds. He also urged China to include in its development work a greater focus on marginalized populations such as Tibetans and Uyghurs. This is exactly what we’ve been working towards – bold, precise actions that focus on Tibet.
The very next day, SFT, as part of Tibet Advocacy Coalition, helped organize an event titled ‘Defenders in Detention’, where family members of activists currently detained in China, including Nyima Lhamo, niece of the late Tenzin Delek Rinpoche, spoke at this event that looked to build on the legacy of Liu Xiaobo. This event was very well-attended, with major government missions (including China’s) and Human Rights Groups including the Office of the High Commissioner of Human Rights. Our team directly confronted China on their persecution of Tenzin Delek Rinpoche.
At the UN, we take every opportunity to take such actions. With the Treaty Bodies, Rights Review Mechanisms, such as the Universal Periodic Review, and Special Mandate Holder’s offices, the UN remains an important avenue to both hold China accountable, and suggest concrete multilateral action for Tibet from UN Member States.
Thanks to you, we are able to highlight Tibet on an international platform. With China’s Human Rights Review coming up in a year, our continued work is more important now than ever.
The UN is a critical avenue for Tibet advocacy – when done right. At SFT, we are committed and ready to take strategic and smart action for Tibet. We hope you will continue to support us in this important work.