NPC delegations from Tibet go abroad to clear biases and rumors

By Zhao Yusha Source:Global Times Published: 2018/6/5 19:28:39

Delegates to the People's Congress of the Tibet Autonomous Region meet scholars and politicians in Washington on December 5, 2017. Photo: VCG

The Chinese government has been sending Tibetan delegations for foreign visits to present the real Tibet.

One such delegation was led by Baima Wangdui, deputy to the People's Congress of the Tibet Autonomous Region. They met US Senator Dan Sullivan, Congressmen Darin LaHood, Rick Larsen, Jim McGovern and US Department of State officials in Washington DC, the Xinhua News Agency reported in May.

Baima urged the US to recognize the anti-China nature of the Dalai Lama clique and not to be in touch or support them. The US side reaffirmed that it recognized Tibet as a part of China and would not support "Tibet independence," Xinhua said.

The NPC delegation, along with another Tibetan group, sent by the United Front Work Department (UFWD) of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, and other government departments, is meant to reaffirm that Tibet is an integral part of China and clear foreign countries' bias against the region, Zhu Weiqun, former chairman of the ethnic and religious committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, also former member of UFWD's Tibet delegation, told the Global Times.

Delegation members come from various backgrounds in Tibet - from farmers to workers to government officials. "Only people who have close links with Tibet and are familiar with the situation can be chosen members, so that they can picture a real Tibet to the outside world," said Zhu.

The Tibet delegation visits became an annual affair since the first one to Canada in 2009, according to the National People's Congress's website.

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The delegation has visited some 20 countries since 2009, telling nations in different parts of the world about Tibet's social and economic development, freedom of religion and ecological protection, Xinhua reported in March.

Among the nations that the team went to, the US and Canada were most visited. "Because the US and Canada, along with many other Western countries, have deep misunderstandings over Tibet, and they used to covertly or overtly support 'Tibet independence,'" said Zhu.

Thanks to the effort by these delegations, he said, fewer Western governments are seeking relations with the Dalai Lama or publicly supporting "Tibet-independence" in recent years.

The Dalai Lama has been causing problems between China and India.

In April 2017, the Dalai Lama paid a nine-day visit to South Tibet, the so-called "Arunachal Pradesh" claimed by India to be its territory. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang later said that China is firmly opposed to any visit by the Dalai Lama to the border region between China and India.

Foreigners visit

The Chinese government also welcomes foreign delegations to explore Tibet by themselves.

Early in May, Tibet received a delegation from Ukraine, formed of Ukrainian officials, scholars and journalists. Viktor Yelensky, a member of the Ukrainian parliament, who led the delegation, congratulated Tibet on its remarkable economic and social development, according to a news release sent to the Global Times by the Tibetan publicity department on Monday.

The statement quoted the official as saying that Ukraine will continue to support the one-China policy, adding that he hopes the visit will deepen understanding of the region and strengthen the two countries' friendship.

In November 2015, China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs invited 14 journalists from 11 foreign news agencies, including Reuters and Bloomberg, and from newspapers like the Financial Times and Le Figaro to conduct interviews in Tibet.

 "Such activities are very important to show the outside world what it is really like in Tibet. And they should be carried on in the future," said Zhu.

Newspaper headline: Telling the Tibetan truth


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