DHARAMSALA, 12 Dec: Ontario’s first Tibetan MPP has called on Canada to stand up for freedom and Human rights of Tibetans, Uighurs and Hong Kongers.
Ontario’s Member of Provincial Parliament (MPP), Bhutila Karpoche made the remarks in her address before the provincial legislature on 10 Dec that marks the 30th anniversary of the conferment of Nobel Peace Prize to His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
“I rise today in the house as a proud Tibetan Canadian to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the conferment of the Nobel Peace Prize to His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama,” the 35-year-old NDP MPP said.
Karpoche, the first person of Tibetan descent ever elected to public office in North American said in her speech that the Tibetan spiritual leader was bestowed with the prestigious peace award for “the struggle for the liberation of Tibet and the efforts for a peaceful resolution instead of using violence thirty years ago on 10 Dec 1989 on the International Human Rights Day.
“Tibetans continue to seek freedom and human rights through non-violence. However the situation in Tibet is worsening and there are ongoing human rights abuses by the Chinese government,” She added.
Highlighting the grave situation inside Tibet, she then raised the case of Chinese government’s sentencing of Anya Sengdra, an environmental activist to seven years in prison recently and that of Tashi Wangcuk’s case, a Tibetan language advocate who was imprisoned simply for advocating for the rights of Tibetans to learn their own language.
“Since 2009 there have been over 150 self-immolations protesting China’s illegal occupation of Tibet,” she added.
She further raised the Chinese Communist Regime’s record of human rights violations in East Turkistan, and in Hong Kong.
“The Chinese government’s human rights violations are not only in Tibet but also in East Turkistan, and in Hong Kong. Leaked documents confirm what Uyghur people have been saying for years about the mass detention of Uyghurs in camps for indoctrination and forced labour. The movement for democracy in Hong Kong is in its seventh month and despite the Chinese government’s attempt to shut it down through mass arrests and violence, the people are continuing to take to the streets,” she said.
She then called on the Canadians to stand in solidarity and join Tibetans, Uighurs and Hong Kongers in their call for freedom and Human rights,
“We who enjoy and have the freedom have a responsibility to support the fight for freedom of others.”
Bhutila Karpoche is a Canadian politician, who was elected to the Legislative Assembly of Ontario in the 2018 provincial election after securing nearly 60 per cent of the vote.
Born to a Tibetan refugee family in Nepal, she moved to Toronto from Nepal when she was 18.