Human rights discussion

Participants included (from left) Hua Xiping from the Overseas Chinese Democracy Coalition, Chinese dissident Wei Jingsheng, ICT’s Tenzin Dhongthog, Amy Lee from Falun Gong, Rebiya Kadeer’s daughter Akida Rouzi and host Bill Ohsie, Director of the regional Amnesty chapter.

The October 23 discussion, hosted by Amnesty International, was held to send message to President Bush not to compromise on human rights in his talks with President Jiang.

Amnesty International-Houston presented the panel discussion, entitled “Human Rights in China,” to coincide with President Jiang Zemin first ever visit to Houston.

The event was designed to highlight the human rights concerns in China while President Jiang and the Chinese delegation of more than 100 dined at the nearby Hotel Inter-continental Houston.

At the discussion, ICT’s Tenzin Dhongthog addressed the audience about the urgency for dialogue between China and the Dalai Lama and case of Gedhun Choekyi Nyima, the 11th Panchen Lama.

Dhongthog said that the release from Chinese custody of the Panchen Lama and his family is now a major focus of ICT’s campaigning work.

“I had a chance to explain ICT’s position in support of face-to-face dialogue between China and the Dalai Lama or His representatives in order to arrive at a concrete solution to the Tibet issue that is in the best interests of both the Tibetan and Chinese peoples,” said Dhongthog.

“This was an effective event with good questions from the audience; it gave us a chance to get our message across to many different kinds of people,” Dhongthog said.

“I thanked Amnesty International for the work that they do on behalf of Tibetan political prisoners, and urged all of the participants to redouble their efforts on behalf of the detained Panchen Lama,” Dhongthog continued.

After the event, Dhongthog was interviewed by Radio Free Asia about ICT’s position on the current situation of Sino-Tibetan relations.