FM warns US on exploiting Tibet issues

Updated: 2012-01-12 07:55

(China Daily)

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BEIJING - China on Wednesday said it opposed foreign countries using Tibet-related issues to interfere in its domestic affairs after the US expressed "serious concern" over three self-immolations by Tibetan monks.

"The Chinese government has always attached great importance to and guaranteed the various basic rights of ethnic minorities, including their freedom of religious belief," Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin said, responding to a question about Washington's concerns and demand that the Chinese government protect human rights.

"We firmly oppose such remarks and practices making use of Tibet-related issues to interfere in China's domestic affairs, which could disrupt Chinese social stability and national unity," he said, adding that China has always administered religious affairs in accordance with the law to maintain religious order.

US State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland on Monday said that the US government was seriously concerned over recent reports that three Tibetan monks died after setting themselves on fire in the western provinces of Qinghai and Sichuan.

"The repeated occurrence of self-immolations in Tibetan-inhabited areas does not meet the aspirations of people there for realizing social stability and a peaceful life," Liu said, adding that these self-immolations were organized, premeditated and instigated by overseas groups and people.

China Daily