19th EU-China Summit: European Parliamentarians and NGOs call on President Tusk to raise the issue of Tibet
International Campaign for Tibet, 31 May 2017
A rally by a coalition of NGOs urging the EU to raise the bleak human right situation in China will take place on June 2, 10.30 am – 12 pm at Schuman circle. The rally will include representatives from the Tibetan and Uyghur communities, the European Parliament, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, the International Federation for Human Rights and International Campaign for Tibet.
On the eve of an important Summit in Brussels on June 2, the European Union is being urged by European Parliamentarians and a coalition of NGOs, including the International Campaign for Tibet, to raise urgent concerns on human rights with China.
Prime Minister Li Keqiang will lead the Chinese delegation for the 19th Summit and will meet Presidents Tusk and Juncker.
Vincent Metten, EU Policy Director at the International Campaign for Tibet said: “As there hasn’t been any dialogue on human rights between the EU and China since November 2015, it is of utmost importance that EU leaders explicitly and publicly express their concerns about the degradation of the human rights situation in China and Tibet, where 150 Tibetans have self-immolated since 2009. They must call on Prime Minister Li Keqiang to resume the dialogue process with the representatives of the Dalai Lama.”
Fourteen European Deputies representing six political groups and eleven countries called on the EU this week to “urgently review its Human Rights Dialogue with China”, saying: “The EU and its member states must pursue a more ambitious, united and transparent policy with regard to human rights in China that is part of a larger strategy for change, and insist on maintaining a regular, high-level and result-oriented human rights dialogue.” European Deputies added: “We are also convinced that the degradation of human rights in Tibet must be systematically raised at each EU-China Summit including the need to resume a meaningful dialogue with the Dalai Lama’s representatives and we call President Tusk to do so at the 19th EU-China Summit to be held in Brussels on 2 June.”
In a joint letter addressed to EU leaders, sixteen NGOs also stated: “While the greatest obstacles remains Chinese government intransigence, more than two decades of hesitant, formulaic EU approaches to human rights have done little to improve the situation in China.” The NGOs addressed six key recommendations including the need for the EU “to announce its decision to suspend and review the bilateral human rights dialogue” and “the need to resume that dialogue with the Dalai Lama’s representatives and to release immediately and unconditionally those detained solely for engaging in peaceful support for the Dalai Lama.”
On June 29, 2015, following the 17th EU-China Summit in Brussels, President of the European Council Donald Tusk had directly referred to concerns on Tibet and called for the dialogue with the Dalai Lama’s representatives to be resumed.
In Tibet, a monk in his twenties, Jamyang Losel set fire to himself and died on 19 May in Qinghai, in the 150th self-immolation by a Tibetan in the People’s Republic of China since 2009. A security crackdown has been imposed in the Chentsa area, with restrictions on the movement of residents in the town and tightened control over communications.