Against a backdrop of rising tension between China and Japan over territorial dispute, the Dalai Lama turned up in Tokyo demanding that Beijing investigate the recent Tibetan self-immolations.
He said the self-immolations are a symptom of the desperation and frustration felt by Tibetans living under the Chinese
government’s hardline policies in the region, including tight restrictions on religious life.
Former US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has reiterated that the “worsening crisis in Tibet that is a challenge to the conscience of the world”, and said “Tibetans have legitimate grievances after decades of harsh rule” by China.
Welcoming the Flame of Truth Torch relay in San Francisco, the Democratic leader said in her letter on 10 November: “How proud we are that San Francisco is the final stop for this Global Torch as it completes its 21 city relay across our continent. The global Torch has, no doubt, raised about the worsening crisis in Tibet that is a challenge to the conscience of the world.”
“Throughout my twenty five years in Congress, I have made the cause of Tibet a top priority, and I am proud to represents a city that strongly the protection of human rights. We are proud that the San Francisco Bay Area is home to the third community of Tibetans in the United States and we stand in solidarity with the people of Tibet,” Pelosi said.
“The people of Tibet have legitimate grievances after decades of harsh rule. They have been economically marginalised in their own land, imprisoned for peacefully expressing their political views, and forced to endure “political education” campaigns to denounce His Holiness the Dalai Lama. The United States, a country rooted in the values of liberty, equality, and human rights, has a special responsibility to protect and promote those values, both at home and abroad,” she said.