Students for Free Tibet (SFT) observed the 25th anniversary of 1987 Lhasa protest against China’s rule yesterday in New York. Four people who witnessed the Lhasa protests were invited to commemorate the day.
The peaceful protest which began on September 27, 1987 in Tibet’s capital by a group of monks sparked a much larger protest on October 01, 1987. SFT President Tenzin Dorjee spoke to the gathering about the historical importance of observing the anniversary of 1987 Lhasa protests which were the largest protests in Tibet since March 10, 1959 Lhasa Uprising.
Dr. Blake and John Ackerley who witnessed the protests in Lhasa spoke of China’s brutal use of force on unarmed peaceful protesters. Dr. Blake Kerr said that Chinese soldiers were shooting peaceful protesters, including children. He helped treat the injured Tibetans while John Ackerley took those memorable photographs, including Tibetan monk Jampa Tenzin, shouting freedom slogans with his arm half burned, and rushing into a burning police station.
Penpa and Lobsang Tenzin who also witnessed the 1987 Lhasa protests were also invited at the anniversary commemoration yesterday in New York. They also reminisced what they did during the protests. Penpa said, “1987 Lhasa protests were testament to the world that the younger generations of Tibetans had begun their struggle for Tibet’s independence.