"One-Day Hunger-Strike"
(Bombay, January 31 - February 1, 2003)

Hunger Strikers at the Azad Maidan

Friends of Tibet (INDIA), Bombay Tibetan Refugee Association, supporters, friends and sympathisers observed a 24-hour hunger-strike at the Azad Maidan, Bombay from January 31, 2003 to protest and mourn the execution of Tibetan freedom fighter, Lobsang Dhondup. The hunger-strike and the candle-light vigil was also to appeal to the international community to put pressure on the Chinese government to overturn the death sentence and immediately release Tulku Tenzin Delek, who is also on death row on trumped up charges.

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China Executes Tibetan After Secret Trial.
Tibetans And Supporters Demand Action And Answers !

In an act that has shocked and outraged the international community, on January 26, 2003, the Chinese authorities have secretly executed 29-year old Lobsang Dhondup, a Tibetan activist, after a fraudulent and secret "re-trial" in the Sichuan Provincial High People's Court, on trumped up charges of "attempting to split the motherland and overthrow the state by planting bombs".

Lobsang Dhondup and Tulku Tenzin Delek, a 52 year old senior popular Buddhist monk were charged with masterminding the Chengdu bomb blast of April 3, 2002 and had been taken into custody on April 7.

Lobsang Dhondup was born on June 15, 1974 in the village of Duphutse in Ngyachu in Kham, now incorporated into the Chinese province of Sichuan. He left his family to become a monk at a monastery run and managed by Tulku Tenzin Delek.

Tulku Tenzin Delek, one of the most highly revered spiritual figures in Karze, has long since engaged in campaigns to improve the plight of the Tibetan people and rejuvenate the Tibetan culture and language. In a taped message smuggled out of his Chinese jail, Tulku Tenzin Delek insisted that he had nothing to do with the alleged crime. "Whatever (the authorities) do and say, I am completely innocent..I have always urged people to be kind-hearted and caring toward others. Everybody knows what I say and practice."

However, in December 2002, after a summary trial, as the world looked on in disbelief, both men were sentenced to death. Lobsang Dhondup was given an immediate death sentence and Tulku Tenzin Delek was sentenced to death with a suspension of two years. Both men had appealed their sentences. But after yet another summary and secret trial, Lobsang Dhondup was executed last Sunday.

Normally executions in China and elsewhere are a public event, deliberately made public to intimidate potential trouble-makers. However, Lobsang Dhondup was quietly executed without public knowledge perhaps to avoid inflaming Tibetan passions.

"China's actions cannot go unanswered," said John Hocevar, Executive Director of Students for a FreeTibet. "The Chinese authorities misled the US State Department during the recent US-China human rights dialogue by failing to reveal the sweeping repression and arrests that took place in connection with this case".

This slap in the face of the international community, only confirms China's sickeningly violent record in dealing with any kind of dissent, especially with the Tibetan community.

Amnesty International (AI) recorded at least 1,263 executions in China in 1999 and 2,088 death sentences, the London based group said in a report. From 1990 to the end of 1999 Amnesty International recorded 27,599 death sentences in China and more than 18,194 executions an average of at least 2,759 death sentences and 1,802 confirmed executions every year. An average of 40 executions a week. (AFP report)

AI also expressed concerns that Chinese medical doctors were increasingly administering lethal injections to execute criminals. "There are also well-grounded fears that the use of lethal injections may facilitate the removal of organs from executed prisoners for transplantation a practice which has been well-documented in China," it said.

Since the occupation of Tibet by China, more than 6,000 monasteries have been destroyed, thousands languish in prisons, many are missing and over a million people have been killed. Lobsang Dhondup is China's latest victim.

One-Day Hunger-Strike was organised by the Friends of Tibet (INDIA) and Bombay Tibetan Refugee Association at the Azad Maidan, Bombay from January 31 till February 1, 2003

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