ICT’s Tibet Roundup—2023 Issue 5 (April 1-15)
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- New Party Secretary for Lhasa City’s Chengguan district
- Government recruitment notice requires anti-Dalai Lama stance from job seekers
- Loyalty to CCP top priority for a “clean and honest government”
- Woman given administrative punishment for commenting on social media
- Lhasa Religious Work Conference
- Removal of prayer flags for environment sanitation
- Research points to manufacturing of consent for pastoralists’ resettlement
According to Chinese state media, Xu Hai was announced as the Secretary of the Chengguan District Party Committee and a member of the Standing Committee of the Lhasa Municipal Committee during a party meeting on April 4.
Xu Hai’s selection as Secretary of the Lhasa City’s Chengguan District Party Committee is significant as the core of Lhasa—consisting of ancient Tibetan cultural institutions like the three great monasteries, the Jokhang temple, Ramoche temple, the Potala Palace, Norbulingka, etc.—falls under his jurisdiction as the Party Secretary of Chengguan District.
During a conference on the construction of a clean and honest government in early April, the Tibet Autonomous Region Deputy Secretary of the Party Committee and the Secretary of the Party Group of the TAR Political Consultative Conference laid out the priorities for a clean and honest government. The top priorities are the political construction of the CCP, strengthening and normalizing political and CCP loyalty education, strictly supervising implementation of the anti-separatist struggle, broadening party members, having the cadres firmly defend the “two establishments” and achieving the “two safeguards.”
Taken together, the two political slogans cement Xi Jinping as the core of the CCP and his rule as unchallengeable.
The two establishments are 1) to establish the status of Xi Jinping as the core of the CCP and 2) to establish the guiding role of Xi Jinping thought on socialism with Chinese characteristics for the New Era.
The two safeguards are 1) safeguard the core status of General Secretary Xi Jinping within the CCP and 2) to safeguard the centralized authority of the CCP.
The Chinese state has been resettling millions of Tibetan pastoralists from their ancestral land into state-built housing projects with copayments from the pastoralists. Four hundred and fifty Tibetan villages will have been resettled by 2025 from targeted areas in northwest Nagchu, west Shigatse, east Ngari and west Lhoka. Dr. Emily Yeh and Dr. Yonten Nyima in their paper published in March 2023 show the modus operandi of the Chinese state’s manufactured consent from the pastoralists in Nagchu—the largest pastoral region on the Tibetan plateau—to resettle “voluntarily” into state-built housing projects hundreds of kilometers away from their ancestral land. Despite attachment and resistance against moving away from their land, county and township level officials, who are under pressure from their superiors to meet hard targets, coercively resettle the pastoral families through “a three-step thought work” process that progresses from incentives to warnings, which has resulted in 100% of targeted pastoralists from Nagchu agreeing to resettle in distant, lower-altitude locations.
Despite the evidence of climate change being more significant than grazing in the declining vegetation on the Tibetan Plateau and grazing removal having no impact on mitigating climate warming, the Chinese state continues to resettle Tibetan pastoralists from their ancestral land in the name of “ecological security.”
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