New York – Today, Students for a Free Tibet received the good news that Tenzin Delek Rinpoche’s sister, Dolkar Lhamo, and her daughter have been released by the Chinese authorities. They had gone missing for 14 days after they were taken by Chinese police in a restaurant in Chengdu city, Sichuan province, at around 8am local time on July 17th, 2015.
Tenzin Dolkar, Executive Director of Students for a Free Tibet says: “We are relieved to learn that Tenzin Delek Rinpoche’s sister and her daughter finally have been released after 14 days of devastating uncertainty of their whereabouts and safety. But, we are still seeking answers from the Chinese government following Tenzin Delek Rinpoche’s unjust death in prison. The Chinese government has yet to address the international calls of world governments and people of conscience worldwide for an independent investigation into his death. Today, Students for a Free Tibet recommits to help bring justice for Tenzin Delek Rinpoche and his family.
Tenzin Delek Rinpoche’s family were informed of his death by Chinese prison authorities on July 12th, 2015. His family then called on the authorities to release his body in order to perform the last Buddhist rites in his hometown of Lithang. Shortly after, his body was cremated in prison against his family’s wishes and Dolkar Lhamo and her daughter Nyima Lhamo were disappeared by Chinese police.
On July 17th, 2015, Students for a Free Tibet members around the world took action by urging world leaders and governments to call on the Chinese government for Dolkar Lhamo’s and Nyima Lhamo’s immediate release. Students for a Free Tibet welcomes their safe release and is committed to continue helping bring justice for Tenzin Delek Rinpoche and his family.
Tenzin Delek Rinpoche’s family and Tibetans in Tibet are still seeking answers for his untimely and unjust death in Chinese prison. Students for a Free Tibet is calling on world leaders and governments to press the Chinese government for an independent investigation into the suspicious circumstances around Tenzin Delek Rinpoche’s death.
Chinese authorities are continuing the crackdown against Tibetans in Nyachukha and Tenzin Delek Rinpoche’s hometown of Lithang. Many human rights organisations and sources from within Tibet report that a communication and military lockdown in being enforced in these areas. Students for a Free Tibet is calling on world governments and the Chinese government to immediately remove military troops and lift communication blocks from Nyachukha and Lithang.
Tenzin Delek Rinpoche had dedicated his life’s work to the wellbeing of Tibetans in Tibet. He was a social advocate and an environmentalist. His life and legacy continue to inspire Tibetans and supporters worldwide beyond his untimely death.
Tenzin Delek Rinpoche made an appeal before his unjust death: “I am not guilty, please appeal for justice for me”. Tenzin Delek Rinpoche was a Tibetan hero. Let us help bring justice for Tenzin Delek Rinpoche, his family and Tibetans in Tibet.