From the statement by Dr. Lobsang Sangay, Kalon Tripa of the Tibetan government-in-exile on the 53rd anniversary of the 1959 Tibetan uprising:
A Chinese scholar recently observed there are “more Chinese than Tibetans, more police than monks, more surveillance cameras than windows” in Lhasa, the capital city of Tibet. The entire region is under undeclared martial law.
China has built many airfields in Tibet, stationed many more divisions of the PLA, begun expanding the railway line to the borders of neighboring countries, and dispatched thousands of paramilitary forces into Tibetan areas. Tibet has become one of the most militarized areas in the region.
Today, there is no space for any conventional protests such as hunger strikes, demonstrations and even peaceful gatherings in Tibet. Tibetans are therefore taking extreme actions such as the one by 26 Tibetans who have committed self-immolations since 2009. His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the CTA have always discouraged such drastic actions. However, despite our pleas, Tibetans continue to self-immolate with 13 cases already in 2012. Fault lies squarely with the hardline leaders in Beijing, so does the solution. The self-immolations are an emphatic rejection of the empty promises of the so-called ‘socialist paradise.’
The Tibetan struggle is not against the Chinese people or China as a nation. It is against the PRC government’s policies. China must acknowledge the depth of the problems in Tibet and understand they cannot be solved through violence.
To address the tragedy in Tibet, I call on Beijing to accept our Middle Way Policy, which seeks genuine autonomy for Tibetans within the framework of the Chinese constitution and as proposed in the Memorandum and Note of 2008 and 2010 respectively. Hong Kong and Macao have been granted high degree of autonomy. Despite resistance from Taiwan, China has offered Taiwan more autonomy. Why are Tibetans still not granted genuine autonomy as stipulated in the Chinese constitution?
Read full statement here.