We charge Ms Dicky Chhoyang, an official of the exiled Tibetan Administration, of adulterating the facts regarding the political aspirations and demands of Tibetans who self-immolate. On February 19, 2013 she opened her speech at the Geneva Summit For Human Rights and Democracy with a reference to a number of self-immolations, including the case of Sopa Tulku, who sacrificed his life on December 8, 20012.
According to her distorted interpretation of events Sopa had been prompted to self-immolate by a refusal of the Chinese regime to allow him a permit to visit India for a teaching given by His Holiness, a very personal reason indeed, yet what Ms Chhoyang chose not inform her audience is that Sopa Tulku had made his motives emphatically clear in a political statement, released just before his action. Here is a translation of his testimony, which was widely reported at that time:
“I am self-immolating to commemorate Tibetans who have self-immolated since 2009 for our national freedom and religious freedom, and for liberty and freedom of speech. I am not self-immolating for my personal interests or problems, but I do it for 6 million of Tibetan people who have no freedom and for the return of Dalai Lama in Tibet. Tibetan people need to unite to help each other and to work hard for the future of Tibet. Don’t loose hope, there will be a happy day.” Source: Radio Free Asia/Tibet Archive 1/9/2012
Now surely Ms Chhoyang and her colleagues within the Tibetan Administration were very aware of this statement and knew full well that the central demand of Tibetans self-immolating was (and continues to be) Tibet’s independence and the return of the Dalai Lama. Well how then are we to understand her comments at the Geneva meeting, at which referring to Sopa Tulku, she asserted he had stated:
“Dignity is the spirit of a nationality, the courage for justice, the compass leading to future happiness my fellow Tibetans to seek the same happiness that is shared by all people in this world we have to remember we have to remember our dignity and make an effort in all matters dignity is the wisdom to distinguish right from wrong” Source: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RHgELE5ZzLc
Such words have a very idealistic flavor and seem strangely detached from the forceful recorded testimony of Sopa Tulku, indeed some maybe forgiven for wondering if these were scripted, not by a Tibetan embarked upon a political protest in support of Tibet’s national freedom, but a politically correct script-writer. Whatever the facts clearly Dicky Chhoyang decided, to omit from her address, Sopa’s widely reported declaration in support of Tibet’s national freedom.
We are in the presence of censorship here, a cynical doctoring of the facts, in which any mention of Tibetan independence is airbrushed from events or sterilized into a version more suited to the political requirements of the exiled Tibetan Administration. The plain truth is that independence is a dirty word to Ms Chhoyang and her colleagues, such is the toxicity that the very words of Tibetan martyrs who gave their lives in support of an independent Tibet are ignored, doctored and misrepresented.