On the eve of the 15th anniversary of the brutal suppression of the pro-democracy demonstrators in Beijing, the International Campaign for Tibet calls upon the Chinese leadership to reappraise its policies towards the June 4 Tiananmen massacre and on Tibet.

The Chinese leadership has maintained a false accounting of the incidents at Tiananmen Square on June 4, 1989, when many Chinese students and others were killed by the security forces at the direct instruction of the government. The Chinese authorities also have failed to honestly appraise the situation in Tibet, as evidenced by the May 23 release by the State Council Information Office of a White Paper, “Regional Ethnic Autonomy in Tibet.”

“ICT supports the demand of the Chinese public, particularly the families impacted by the Tiananmen tragedy, for the Chinese government to account fully for what transpired in 1989. As for the White Paper, it is a whitewash of the situation in Tibet,” said Mary Beth Markey, ICT Executive Director.

Much of what is contained in the White Paper does not deal with the reality inside Tibet today, where Tibetans fail to enjoy the kind of autonomy depicted in this paper. It is interesting to note that while claiming that Tibetans fully exercise the “rights of self-government,” the White Paper nevertheless admits that the system that exists in Tibet today ‘needs to be improved and developed.’

“If the White Paper’s objective is for the Chinese government to let the Tibetans know that they are seriously looking at the Tibetan issue, then they should stop indulging in rhetoric and instead start substantive negotiations with the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan Government-in-Exile to find a mutually satisfactory solution,” added Markey.