Tortured Tibetan Released Now Being Described As Chinese By Prominent News Source On Tibet

Images showing Lobsang Sangyal before (left) and upon release (main) from a Chinese prison.

Images showing Lobsang Sangyal before (left) and upon release (main) from a Chinese prison.

Image: photos taken by a courageous Tibetan inside occupied Tibet/graphic via @tibettruth

According to the Tibetan Center for Democracy and Human Rights (TCHRD) “On 12 November, a Tibetan monk named Lobsang Sangyal was released from Mianyang prison near the provincial capital of Chengdu, Sichuan Province in People’s Republic of China”.

Unfortunately due to an editorial policy of TCHRD we do not share or post their reports, why so? Well for some curious reason this Tibetan staffed and managed organization, based in the exiled Tibetan community of Dharamsala, India,  consistently repeats and promotes propaganda terminology used by the Chinese regime to support its bogus claims that Tibet is an inalienable part of China.  The result is that what are clearly Tibetan towns, villages, and territories are regularly described using cynically fabricated Chinese-sounding terms.This is a gross misrepresentation of the facts regarding Tibet’s geographic and territorial status as a distinct land and culture whose people enjoyed prior to invasion by China in 1950 national freedom with their own government. The TCHRD appears unconcerned by the reality that within international law Tibet remains an independent nation under an illegal occupation. Nor does it appear aware that in employing China’s disinformation it  misleads those who regard its publications as a trusted source of information on Tibet. Furthermore its tainted reports, which conform in regards to Tibetan geography with official Chinese descriptions and titles,  are effectively endorsing China’s rule over Tibet.

As we have noted before if TCHRD wishes to present itself as a balanced and neutral source, then surely it could, without too much effort in its reportage, describe places accurately as Tibetan (city, town, village, region) and then add in parenthesis the politicized Chinese version. But it does not do so, preferring to emphasize such locations as being in Chinese provinces within China, that is a political decision on its part. Which we oppose!

This is why we choose not to spread reports from TCHRD  and prefer to rewrite their content to more accurately inform those who may have little knowledge on Tibet, which we do so below concerning this latest release of a Tibetan political prisoner.

‘Lobsang Sangyal was a monk at Kirti Monastery in Ngaba, Amdo region of occupied Tibet (Chinese: Aba) County in Ngaba Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan Province). Chinese authorities restricted the monk’s family members from receiving him outside the prison. Compared to his pre-prison picture with the present, Lobsang Sangyal appears very weak and is said to suffer from memory loss, according to exile Tibetan sources.Previous information released by TCHRD indicates that the monk was detained soon after the self-immolation of his cousin Lobsang Kelsang, also a monk at Kirti Monastery, on 27 August 2012. However exile sources claim that Lobsang Sangyal had been detained several times before his imprisonment in 2012. The reason for 2012 detention that led to his four-year sentencing was due to the sale and distribution of Dalai Lama’s photos and records of the teachings of the Tibetan spiritual leader. TCHRD is unable to verify the exact charges although Lobsang Sangyal has been released. The charges and sentence term imposed on him still remain vague because of the extreme restrictions imposed by the Chinese authorities inside Tibet. Lobsang Sangyal is believed to have returned to his monastery.’ (Source: TCHRD 11/18/2016-Amended to include accurate Tibetan locations)

We wonder how Lobsang Sangyal would feel upon hearing that the TCHRD described him as coming from Sichuan Province in China?

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Runggye Adak Released Yet His Protest Continues To Be Censored By Tibet Support Groups

Image: phayul

Runggye Adak a prominent Tibetan political prisoner, arrested on August 1st 2007 has according to reports from Tibet been released, a development greatly welcomed by all supporting human rights and justice. His case has received international attention and any internet search of his name reveals the extent of coverage and various supportive actions. Indeed Runggye became something of a cause célèbre for Tibet support groups.

It is less well known that from the day of his arrest the courageous action of this Tibetan hero was deliberately misrepresented by organizations supposedly dedicated to the Tibetan cause. So was set in motion a partial and selective truth. Indeed Runggye Adak’s protest was about the return of the Dalai Lama and Panchen Lama a call for Tibetan unity along with environmental issues. However groups such as the International Campaign For Tibet chose not to inform the wider Tibetan movement that Runggye had on that day demanded Tibet’s rightful independence. Yet that fact was reported at the time by the Tibetan Center For Human Rights and Democracy, Link Phayul Link and Dossier Tibet Link all respected sources on Tibet.

Image: file photo

So why the omission? Well before anyone cites administrative oversight it may prove instructive for readers to be aware that Tibetan independence is a taboo for the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) and its ‘support group’ friends. So it’s not too difficult to calculate why the demands made by a very brave Tibetan were censored. Despite these being carefully reported and confirmed by the previously mentioned Tibetan news sources, many Tibet support groups erased Runggye’s call for an independent Tibet from their reportage. A video of his protest was also released although whether due to happy coincidence or judicious editing absent from the footage is any reference of Tibet’s independence!

Even as news of his release was announced the International Tibet Support Network, via a website ‘Free Tibetan Heroes‘ while expressing its joy at the news repeated the censored version of his protest.

“When on stage Runggye Adak boldly grabbed the microphone and addressed a crowd of several thousand Tibetans who had gathered for the annual festival. He said: “If we cannot invite the Dalai Lama home, we will not have freedom of religion and happiness in Tibet.” adding that “Eye-witnesses also say that Runggye Adak’s speech called for local Tibetans to stop fighting among themselves about land and water issues..” Source

We salute Runggye Adak’s incredible courage and patriotism, what he has endured is beyond the darkest of nightmares. We respect too and applaud his just demands for an independent Tibet an action that has cost him dearly. Given his sacrifices, the torture and degree of misery he has experienced there many who will  such censorship as a despicable act. That so many folks across the Tibetan scene chose to betray his actions by promoting a falsehood engineered in the safe and comfortable offices of the Central Tibetan Administration, International Campaign For Tibet and International Tibet Support Network is deeply disappointing.

As noted August 6th 2014 by our Facebook page:

Dear Tibetans how would you feel if in occupied Tibet you had decided to protest at a public festival to call for the return of Kundun, to urge unity among Tibetans and to declare support for Tibetan independence ONLY to learn while you are in prison being tortured by the,psychopaths of China’s regime that, in exile, Tibetan organizations were reporting your action BUT had censored any mention of your supportive call for Tibetan independence! That is precisely what happened in the case of Rongay A’drak!