To coincide with the China Festival that has begun in Amsterdam, Amnesty International and other organizations are hosting a panel discussion on October 5, 2005 on “China: The Next Generation – Forgotten minorities” with Rebiya Kadeer, a prominent Uighur human rights activist, and Tsering Jampa, Executive Director of International Campaign for Tibet- Europe, as panelists. Jan Andersson, Chairman of the Board of International Campaign for Tibet Deutschland e.V in Berlin, is moderating the session.
More information about this and other programs, which include include debates and discussions about human rights, freedom of speech, independent moviemakers and eccentric theatrical art exhibitions can be had from http://www.debalie.nl/voorpagina.jsp. The debates and lectures are broadcasted live on the internet at www.debalie.nl/live.
Following is the information on the panel discussion as released by the organizers.
Do China’s minorities celebrate?
This evening you will be introduced to China’s minorities. You will find out how Chinese authorities cope with minority-issues and will be informed first hand on the difficulties that these groups experience in their daily lifes.
Freedom of expression and religion continue to be a sensitive topic in China. The global war on terror has made the problems of minorities only harder. Besides Uighur human rights activists and exile community representatives, ICT (International Campaign for Tibet) and the UNPO (Organization of non Represented Peoples) will participate in this program.
Since the september 11 attacks in the United States, the Chinese authorities have used the global ‘war on terrorism’ to justify their crackdown on ethnic minorities who are pressing for greater autonomy over there historic regions. Arrests of so-called ‘seperatists, terrorists and religious extremists’ continue. Many of those charged with ‘seperatist’ or ‘terrorist’ offences face questionable trials and are reportedly sentenced to death.
One of the largest minorities – the Uighurs – live in Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region (XUAR), located in the Northwest of China. The region once made up the central portion of the legendary Silk Road. The Uighurs are Turkish speaking people and primarily Muslim. At the moment, millions of Chinese immigrants control the region politically, economically and culturally. The Uighurs are suffering unemployment, discrimination and restrictions on their religious and cultural freedoms. A problem similar to the situation Tibetans increasingly face.
- Uighur speaker: Mrs. Rebiya Kadeer, a prominent Uighur human rights activist.
- ICT (International Campaign for Tibet) speaker: Tsering Jampa Executive Director ICT Europe
- UNPO (Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization) speaker: Mr. Marino Busdachin General Secretary of the UNPO
In cooperation with: Amnesty International. Wednesday October 5th 20:30hrs. 10 euro | discount 8 euro | 4 euro Int. Student Discount.