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Civil society gears up ahead of Panchen Lama’s 25th year of disappearance

 
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PostPosted: Thu 23 Apr - 14:14 (2020)    Post subject: Civil society gears up ahead of Panchen Lama’s 25th year of disappearance Reply with quote

http://www.phayul.com/2020/04/22/43172/

DHARAMSHALA, APR. 22: Days ahead of the 25th anniversary of 11th Panchen Lama’s disappearance, many organizations, NGOs, concerned monasteries, activist groups prepare for a campaign against China’s abduction of the high-ranking monk.

As the all-India lockdown is extended till May 3, following the increased number of COVID-19 cases, the mode of campaign by concerned outfits have assumed strategic mediums to mark the anniversary. Tashi Lhunpo monastery in Bylakuppe Tibetan settlement, the seat of the Panchen Lama in exile, is set to mark the date by streaming a rendition of the Panchen Lama Long Life Prayer online. The monastery has also scheduled an online panel discussion on Apr. 25 to mark Panchen Lama’s 31st birthday. The panel includes Dr. Lobsang Sangay (CTA President), Zeekgyab Rinpoche (Abbot of Tashi Lhunpo monastery), Sophie Richardson (China Director at HRW), Tenzin Dorjee (Commissioner at USCIRF), Arif Virani (MP in Canada), and Matteo Mecacci (ICT President).

Offices of Tibet in Japan and Taiwan, CTA run Tibet.net said, will gather support from the parliamentarians through lobbying and online campaign to urge the concerned authorities to call upon the Chinese government to release the Panchen Lama, his parents and Chatral Rinpoche. Office of Tibet in Japan began a month-long campaign to translate campaign documents and published thousands of pamphlets in Japanese on the enforced disappearance of the Panchen Lama, which will be made public online.

The office also sent appeal letters, along the lobby kits to “93 Japanese Parliament members of All Party Japanese Parliamentary Support Group for Tibet, members of the Tibet Support Groups, Tibetan religion and culture centers, Tibetans living in Japan, schools and universities in Japan,” reported tibet.net. Lungtok, Representative of HH the Dalai Lama in Japan, urged the parliamentarians to raise and reiterate the call to the Chinese government for an immediate release.

Office of Tibet in Taiwan launched a campaign for the unconditional release of the Panchen Lama by lobbying the “Taiwanese Government and Parliament as well as foreign Embassies in Taiwan to support his immediate release.” The officials presented books on Panchen Lama and human rights situation in Tibet to 39 members of Taiwanese Parliamentary Support Group for Tibet and 9 members of Taipei Assembly Support Group for Tibet. It urged the foreign embassies in Taiwan for the unconditional release of Panchen Lama and demanded information about Chatral Rinpoche, leader of the search-party for the reincarnation of the 10th Panchen Lama who was abducted in 1995.

Gendun Choekyi Nyima, 11th Panchen Lama, turns 31 on Apr. 25. Chinese officials kidnapped the Panchen Lama at the young age of 6 on May 17, 1995. More than two decades later, Tibetans continue to demand the Panchen Lama to be released and returned to the people of Tibet. China claims that his whereabouts are kept undisclosed to protect him. No one has been allowed to visit him since his disappearance.
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