A new policy paper by the International Campaign for Tibet, to be released Monday in Brussels, calls upon the European Union to adopt a consistent new position on Tibet to reflect the importance of Tibet in EU-China relations.
The EU-China Summit opens in Prague on Wednesday, May 20. This follows the cancellation of the last summit by the Chinese government after French President Sarkozy, then EU President, met the Dalai Lama - an indication of the importance of the Dalai Lama to the Chinese government in determining its relationship with Europe.
Beijing has recently warned individual European countries including the Netherlands and France of negative impact on bilateral ties if their leaders and lawmakers meet with the Tibetan leader who it regularly accuses of ‘separatism’.
The paper warns that a lack of cohesion among European member states on the issue of Tibet and conflicting national approaches, especially on protocols for meeting with the Dalai Lama, is not in EU’s interests as it weakens EU’s leverage leaving some countries vulnerable as targets for China’s pressure.
"Withdraw excessive security measures and end repressive political campaigns in Tibet, provide amnesty to Tibetans detained in connection with incidents of peaceful protests since March 2008 to the present day, commute death sentences for Tibetans involved in March 14 riots in Lhasa and ensure a fair trial and defense lawyers of their choice; and allow foreign diplomats, independent analysts and journalists free access to Tibet."
Also six former Tibetan political prisoners testified the situation in Tibet. Ngawang Sangdrol, who was arrested at the age 13 and spent 12 years in Chinese prison, said she has urged European Union not to put "business before human rights."
Some information for this report was provided by ICT and Phayul.