THE INTERNATIONAL CAMPAIGN FOR TIBET (ICT) works to promote human rights and democratic freedoms for the people of Tibet by monitoring the human rights situation in Tibet, advocating for Tibetan rights in front of various governments, and by mobilizing support by individuals and communities. Currently, ICT is asking individuals to help it in pressuring the United States government to take three particular actions in support of the Tibetan people. The issues are as follows:
Petition in support of Freedom of Religion
The ICT has started a petition to help persuade Secretary of State John Kerry to make freedom of religion for Tibetans a higher priority in U.S.-Chinese relations. The Department of State’s 2014 International Religious Freedom Report for Tibet stated that “authorities severely restricted religious freedom and engaged in widespread interference in religious practices, especially in Tibetan Buddhist monasteries and nunneries” and that “official interference in the practice of Tibetan Buddhist religious traditions continued to generate profound grievances.” It is clear that China is not listening to our concerns. View and sign the petition here.
Petition in support for Political Prisoners
Another petition urges President Obama to press China for the release of all political prisoners, specifically including Liu Xiaobo, a Chinese literary critic, writer, professor, activist and supporter of the Tibetan people, and winner for the Nobel Peace Prize “for his long and non-violent struggle for fundamental human rights in China.” Other prisoners include Dhondup Wangchen, a Tibetan film-maker; Migmar Dhondup, a Tibetan tour guide and writer; Runggye Adak, a Tibetan nomad; and Tenzin Delek Rinpoche, a Tibetan religious and community leader. View and sign the petition here.
Petition in Support of Foreign Travel within Tibet
ICT’s third petition is in support of the Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act. The bipartisan bill “Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act,” (H.R. 1112) introduced by Congressmen Jim McGovern (D-MA) and Joseph Pitts (R-PA), would deny access to the United States by Chinese officials who are responsible for creating or administering policies on travel to Tibetan areas until China eliminates discriminatory restrictions on access by Americans to Tibet. By restricting access by foreigners to Tibet, China is more easily able to limit the basic human rights of the Tibetan people. This bill would put pressure on the Chinese government to ease its travel ban for foreigners in this important region. View and sign the petition here.