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Statement by Foreign Affairs Committee of NPCon Dalai Lama's Speech at EP general Assembly

2001-11-27 00:00

   In defiance of China’s repeated presentation and strong opposition, a few responsible members of the European Parliament (EP) gave permission to the Dalai Lama’s visit and provided him with a platform against China on October 24 at EP’s general assembly, allowing him to deliver a long, fact -distorting speech to wantonly attack the Chinese government and unscrupulously paddle his plot of splitting China. Such erroneous naturally arouse our great indignation.

   The Dalai Lama’s speech at the EP general assembly once again revealed his true nature of not being a mere religious fellow but a politician-in- exile under the robe of Buddhism who engages himself with activities aimed at splitting the motherland. Profuse in hypocrisy, his speech is prepared with much thought of trying to deceive and hoodwink the international community by means of concocting lies, confounding right and wrong and turning things upside down so as to win sympathy and support and fan up unfavorable  sentiment against China. He dishonestly claimed that he was “ not an expert in political science” so that he made the address “as a simple Buddhist monk “, and that he believed in and sought for “democracy”, “freedom” and “humility” and advocated “tolerance, forgiveness” so on and so forth. But under the coverage of the beautiful veil, he obstinately holds onto his consistent position of “Tibetan independence”, alleging quite astonishingly that Tibet is “an occupied country” where “immense destruction and human suffering inflicted on the people of Tibet”, where “serious violations of human rights are widespread ”, and its and national identity “are facing the threat of extinction”. Accusing the Central Government for having refused to engage him for talks, he appealed for international attention and support.
   From the above one can easily tell the intention and ulterior motives Dalai harbors to split the motherland.

   Facts speak louder than words and lies repeated even for one hundred times cannot alter the reality. So, let us see what the facts tell.

   As is known to all, Tibet is part of China from ancient times and it was officially incorporated into China during the reign of Yuan Dynasty in the early 13th century. Since then, Tibet has been an administrative region directly under the jurisdiction of the Central Government of China. The Dalai Lama and the Bainqen Lama are the two leading incarnation hierarchies of the Gelug Sect of Tibetan Buddhism. The Central Government of China’s Qing Dynasty granted honorific titles to the Dalai Lama and the Bainqen Lama in 1653 and 1713 respectively, officially established their political and religious status in Tibet, and held the power to decide the reincarnation of the Dalai Lama and the Bainqen Lama. Their installation and succession must be granted and approved by the Central Government. The 14th Dalai Lama, who is now in exile, succeeded to the throne in 1940 after the approval of the then Chairman of China’s national government. Tibet has never been an independent state and no government in the world has ever recognized it as such a state.

  People’s Republic of China was founded in 1949 after the Chinese People’s War of Liberation won the decisive victory. Such cities and provinces as Beijing, Suiyuan, Hunan, Xinjiang and Xikang were all liberated peacefully one after  another from the rule of the former  Kuomintang government. Deciding to adopt the same peaceful approach to Tibet, the Central Government  invited  the local authorities of Tibet to send delegates to Beijing for negotiations. In January 1951,the 14th Dalai Lama accepted the proposal for peaceful negotiations. He sent delegates to Beijing and signed on May 23, 1951 the Agreement of the Central People’s Government and the Local Government of Tibet on Measures for the Peaceful Liberation of Tibet (i.e. the 17-Article Agreement). It was explicitly stipulated in the agreement that national religious autonomy would be instituted in Tibet, and the political system in Tibet or the established status, functions and powers of the Dalai Lama and the Bainqen Erdeni should remain unchanged. It also emphasized that the religious beliefs, customs and habits of the Tibetan people must be respected, and the spoken and written language and school education of the Tibetan ethnic group should be developed step by step along with the development of agriculture, livestock raising, industry and commerce and the improvement of the people’s living standard. It specifically stipulated that in matters relating to reforms in various fields in Tibet, there should be no coercion on the part of the central authorities, and reform should be carried out by the Tibetan local government of its own accord and through consultations between the Tibetan people and their leaders. The agreement won the approval and support of the people from all walks of life in Tibet. The Dalai and Bainqen also expressed their support by  a telegram and a statement respectively. With the support of the Tibetan people, the People’s Liberation Army entered Lhasa and other areas without a hitch according to the agreement and the peaceful  liberation was fulfilled in Tibet. The PLA’s entry into Tibet represents the process in which the Central Government takes over the local authorities from the hand of the old Kuomintang regime and it won the approval and support of the Dalai himself and the broad masses of the Tibetan people. It is perfectly justified that a central government of one country exercises jurisdiction upon its own territory and this is no exception for any country in the world. However, the Dalai claims repeatedly that China has “invaded Tibet” and refuses to recognize Tibet as part of China. Isn’t his intention of splitting the motherland abundantly clear? In his speech the Dalai declared flagrantly that he wants a “referendum” for Tibet. Since Tibet is an inseparable part of China territory and an autonomous region well under the jurisdiction of China, there is no room for conducting a “referendum” on Tibet’s future. The Dalai’s stand for “referendum” is absolutely in the service of his political attempts to split the motherland.

  The formulation of the 17-Article Agreement, which was reached between the Central Government and Tibetan local governments for the peaceful liberation of Tibet, has fully embodied the Central Government’s concern and care for the Tibetan local government. The contents of the agreement exactly demonstrate the full respect of the central authorities for the culture, religion and the way of life of the Tibetan people. However, the Dalai, in his address, slandered that the Central Government emposed the 17-Article Agreement upon the Tibetan people and “showed scant respect for the unique culture, religion and way of life of the Tibetan people”. This is sheer nonsense and can only fool those who don’t know the reality in Tibet.

  Anyone with a little knowledge of Tibetan history should know that in the area of the old Tibet, the Dalai Lama was the agent-in- chief of the feudal serfdom ruling. Under his rule, the system he practiced was theocracy characterized by the dictatorship of upper-class monks and nobles. At that time, 95% of the Tibetans were serfs and slaves who had literally no personal freedom. Their owners could trade and transfer them, present them as gifts and exchange them, and could arbitrarily carry out such savage and cruel punishments upon them in the owners’ private penitentiaries as gouging out the eyes, cutting off ears, hands and feet, pulling off tendons, and throwing them into water. Inhumane examples like these could be seen everywhere in Tibet and such are the real “immense destruction and human suffering” inflicted on the people of Tibet. The feudal serfdom in Tibet was darker and crueler than the European serfdom of the Middle Ages. It can never be emphasized to say that old Tibet was one of the places in the world where human rights were  violated most seriously during the course of the twentieth century. The Dalai Lama, as then the highest dictator of Tibet, bears inevitable responsibilities for this, and he is the real arch-criminal who has trampled upon human rights and freedoms in Tibet. He never dares to mention his barbarous ruling in old Tibet and has not expressed any sense of repentance. On the contrary, he deceives the international community by shamelessly assuming himself as the “spokesman” for the freedom of Tibet and protector of human rights and humanity.

  After the peaceful liberation of Tibet, the immense majority of Tibetan serfs earnestly wanted to smash the yoke of the feudal serfdom and to carry out the democratic reform. The Central Government adopted a very circumspect attitude toward the reform. In accordance with the 17- Article Agreement, the Central Government didn’t  use coercion to implement such reform but allowed it to be carried out by the Tibetan local government of its own accord. In 1957, the Central Government also decided that in the period of the Second Five -Year Plan (1958-1962), no reforms would be carried out in Tibet, and whether to carry it out or not after that should be left to the Tibet local government to decide. However, some members of the Tibetan ruling class were hostile to the reform and wanted to preserve the serfdom forever so as to maintain their own vested interests. Therefore, they deliberately violated and sabotaged the 17- Article Agreement and masterminded armed rebellion in certain areas in a bid to separate the motherland. In March 1959, a handful of Tibetan serf-owners, colluding with foreign forces, mounted a general armed rebellion and advocated flagrantly the separatist slogan of “Tibetan independence”. With the support and assistance of the broad Buddhist monks and laymen, the PLA quelled swiftly the separatists’ rebellion. The Dalai Lama fled the country after the failure of his conspiracy and has since got on the road of confrontation with the Central Government and Tibetan compatriots. This is what Dalai falsely described as the course that “the Tibetan people rose up against the Chinese” and “ I had to escape from Tibet”. Learning the truth, one cannot but feel Dalai’s tricks of confounding black and white.

  Proceeding from the Overall consideration of maintaining the unification of the motherland national unity, the Central Government waited patiently for the Dalai’s changing in mind and returning to the motherland after he fled Tibet. His position as a vice-chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress had been kept for him until 1964. However, the Dalai Lama completely renounced the patriotic stand he once expressed and has engaged himself in numerous activities to split the motherland. He publicly advocates that “Tibet is an independent state” and has never abandoned his stand of “Tibetan independence”. He set up a “government in exile”, established “branch offices” in many places around the world, tossed out “ Principles for Nation-building”, and formulated the so-called “Constitution of the State of Tibet”. He organized rebellion forces and for many times plotted violent riots in Tibet. He sent secret agents and intelligence personnel to carry out terrorist activities in Tibet. He spread rumors and calumnies and engineered other sorts of separatist activities. He shuttled among foreign countries only to advertise the “Tibetan independence”, trying to internationalize the so-called “Tibetan issue”. By analyzing what the Dalai Lama has done over the past 40 years, we can find out that he has done nothing to “serve the people of Tibet”, but instead, he has done everything trying to regain his lost paradise. These he could re-enslave the Tibetan people and separate Tibet from the motherland. However, his fond dreams will by no means come true.

  The Dalai Lama has fled from the country for more than 40 years and has never since set his foot again on the soil of Tibet. Therefore, he knows nothing of the real situation there. In spite of this, he talks such nonsense that Tibet is “oppressed by force and scarred by suffering” and “an entire people with its unique culture and identity are facing the threat of extinction”. Then what on earth is the fact?

  After the Dalai Lama fled amidst failure of the armed rebellion in 1959, democratic reform was carried out at the strong request of the broad masses of the Tibetan people and the extremely barbarous serfdom system was abolished. In 1965, the ethic regional autonomy was instituted in Tibet to make it one of the five national autonomous regions at the provincial level in China. The once serfs and slaves under the Dalai’s rule became masters of their own destiny. With the help of the Central Government and areas throughout the country, economy in Tibet boomed fast and the living standard there increases continuously. At the same time, the ethnic culture, education and public health causes there have scored tremendous progresses, and freedom of religious belief and all the fundamental rights and freedoms have been guaranteed to the full. During the 200 years before 1959, the population in Tibet had been around 1 million. By the end of 2000, there were 2.6163 million people in Tibet, of whom 2.4112 million were Tibetans, representing an increase of almost 1.5 times in the 40 years. Average life expectancy in Tibet has risen from 36 years in 1959 to 67 years at present. In the old Tibet, serfs and slaves, accounting for 95% of the population, were illiterates or semi-illiterates and the few schools were open only to the children of noble origin. In contrast, presently Tibet has established an integrated education system covering from pre-school to higher and professional education. More than 4,300 schools of different categories have been set up, and the rate of illiterates and semi-illiterates has reduced to the size of below 40% of present population. The government has systematically investigated, collected, collated, studied and published the traditional cultural heritage and folk arts of Tibetans, and stipulated clearly the study and use of the Tibetan language and bilingual (Tibetan and Chinese) education. The Tibetan cultural characteristics are being further popularized. The Central Government has channeled special appropriations to the maintenance of more than 1,700 monasteries and religious sites, the Potala Palace included. Tibetan people fully enjoy the freedom of engaging in religious activities. At present, fresh achievements are being made in the reform and opening-up, economic restructuring and all other social drives in the Tibetan Autonomous Region, where situation is stable, economy developing, society progressing, and people living and working in harmony and contentment. Tibet has experienced earth-shaking changes.

  History and facts show no tolerance towards distortion. In the past 40 years, the culture, religion and ethnic in Tibet are highly upheld and greatly developed and are not “facing the threat of extinction” as described by the Dalai Lama. In a short span of only 40 years, Tibet has gone through a social and economic revolution that would normally have required centuries for mankind to accomplish. This makes Tibet one of the fastest developed and best improved areas of the cotemporary world in terms of various kinds of social undertakings and human rights situation. What Dalai said about the religious and cultural conditions in Tibet is also sheer nonsense designed to fool, the world.

  In his speech at the EP, he uttered again the so-called “genuine autonomy” of Tibet and “Tibetans fully responsible for their own domestic affairs”, the words he repeated many times in recent years. Now let us take a look at whoever governs Tibet and how the governance is carried out. Since Tibet adopted Ethnic Regional Autonomy. Tibetan and other ethnic minorities’ officials now account for 80 percent of the total staff in the whole region and 93.2 percent the component members of the organs of state power at the four levels of autonomous region, prefecture, county and township. Tibetan citizens hold the key positions in People’s Congress and government of the Autonomous Region and its affiliated regions, cities and counties. Tibetan officials have constituted the main body of the total staff in Tibet. Since the founding of Tibetan Autonomous Region, the Regional People’s congress has formulated more than 160 by-laws and drawn up rules for implementing national laws conforming to the local features of Tibet. For example, in addition to the official national holidays, the Tibetan New Year and the Sholton have been designated as the Regional holidays; Tibet has decreed a work week of 35 hours, five hours less than the official national work week for workers and staff in accordance with the special natural and geographical conditions of Tibet. These fully show that the Ethnic Regional Autonomy is well implemented in Tibet, and the Tibetans have realized their ideal of self-governance. But the Dalai Lama is reluctant to admit the fact that the Tibetans have become the masters of their own affairs. The “genuine autonomy” put forward by him is nothing but a synonym for “separation” and “independence”.

  Moreover, Dalai in his speech addressed to the EP said that his “initiatives and overtures to engage the Chinese leadership in a dialogue remain unreciprocated”, “Beijing’s attitude has hardened significantly compared to the eighties”. This again is an out-and-out lie.

  China’s policy towards the Dalai Lama is consistent and explicit. That is, we hope that he could renounce his separatist stand of  “Tibetan independence” and come back to the position of patriotism. The door will always be open to contacts between the Central Government and the Dalai Lama. The fact is that since February 1979 when he began sending representatives to contact with the Chinese Central Government, the Central Government has received more than ten times delegates sent by him. The channel for contacts is well open. What the Central Government required the Dalai Lama to do is only that he renounces his stand of “Tibetan independence”, stops his separatist activities, and openly states that Tibet is an inalienable part of China, that Taiwan is one of China’s provinces and that the government of the People’s Republic of China is the sole legitimate government representing the whole of China. However, the Dalai Lama has consistently rejected the reasonable demand of the Central Government. He readjusted his tactics now and then, severing his contacts with the Central Government when he thinks the situation is favorable to him, and requesting resumption of contacts when he feels the situation unfavorable. Although the contacts are intermitted due to the Dalai Lama’s disruption, he has spread lies across the world that the Central Government “declined” to negotiate with him and appealed to the international community to exert pressure on the Chinese government in an effort to attain his goal of separation.

  Looking back at the history of contacts between the Central Government and the Dalai Lama for more than 20 years, it is clear that although the Dalai Lama kept on changing his tricks, his stand of “Tibetan independence” still remains unchanged. Even when he is being engaged in contacts with the Central Government, he never relinquishes his separatist activities both at home and abroad. Isn’t the speech given by the Dalai Lama at the EP an evident proof of his activities to oppose the Central Government, split the motherland and undermine the national unity?

  The Chinese government has time and again reiterated that the issue of the Dalai Lama is not a religious issue but a political one, and that the Dalai Lama is not merely a religious figure but a politician-in-exile who indulges in activities of splitting the motherland. There is not at all the so-called “issue of Tibet”. The situation in Tibet is quite satisfactory and the Tibetan people are content with it. What really exists is the issue of Dalai’s separatist activities. We disagree to any country and international organizations that render invitation to and meeting with the Dalai Lama in any name and style and provide the Dalai clique with venues for doing separatist political activities. Such acts by a few members of the EP as to allow Dalai to step onto the EP forum to deceive the international community has not only greatly hurt the feelings of the Chinese people but also damaged the healthy advancement of the Sino-European relations.

  Recently, a few members of the EP who have prejudice against China frequently tabled in confrontational style some irrational bills or resolutions to deliberately vilify China. These bills or resolutions repeatedly make irresponsible remarks on such issues as Tibet, Taiwan, human rights and religious freedom. By distorting facts or even fabricating stories, they are aimed at making unwarranted charges against China. We can’t help asking wherever the EP is going to drag the Sino-European relations to?

  We sincerely hope that the EP could take into consideration of the overall Sino-European friendly cooperation relationship and no longer do anything that will hurt the feelings of the Chinese people and be detrimental to the image of the EU. We hold that dialogues should be held between us on the basis of mutual respect and equality so as to promote our mutual understanding, broaden our consensus and reduce  our misunderstanding and differences. As for the issue of Tibet, we would rather hope that the EP members could put aside prejudice and learn the true picture of Tibet by visiting there themselves. In this way they will be able to avoid making erroneous judgments and conclusions based on biased opinions and information and avoid hampering the sound development of Sino-European relations.

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