DHARAMSHALA: A US Congressional report on China has warned that any attempts by the Chinese government, as advocated by a key communist party official earlier this year, to abrogate ethnic minority status could adversely affect the Tibetan people’s cultural and linguistic identity and further deepen their resentment against the government.
The bipartisan Congressional-Executive Commission on China, in its 2012 Annual Report on developments in human rights and rule of law in China, released Wednesday, said: “This past year, the Chinese Communist Party and government increased pressure on and interference with the Tibetan people’s aspiration to preserve the viability and vibrancy of their culture and language. Zhu Weiqun, UFWD Executive Deputy Head and Director of the Party’s General Office of the Central Coordinating Group for Tibet Affairs, wrote in a February 13, 2012, article that he favors ending or changing some policies that have the potential to benefit ethnic minority cultures. His views, if implemented, could adversely affect the Tibetan people’s cultural and linguistic identity and further deepen resentment against the government.”
The report said the trend of self-immolation incidents in Tibet was concurrent with the increasing Chinese government measures to repress and control core elements of Tibetan culture, including the Tibetan Buddhist religion and monastic institutions, and with the China-Dalai Lama dialogue’s failure to achieve any sign of progress.
“The [Communist] Party and government have not indicated any willingness to consider Tibetan grievances in a constructive manner and to hold themselves accountable for Tibetan rejection of Chinese policies, and handled the crisis as a threat to state security and social stability instead of as a policy failure,” the report added.
The report also documented sustained protests by Tibetans against the Chinese government’s development policies affecting Tibet’s linguistic identity and natural environment.
It said, as of 1 September 2012, there are 1,312 Tibetan political prisoners detained on or after 10 March 2008.