Tibetan separatist efforts will fail: official
Updated: 2012-03-28 07:13
By Cui Jia (China Daily)
Continuous attempts by the Dalai Lama and the so-called Tibetan government-in-exile to restore Tibet's feudal serfdom and split the autonomous region from China will never succeed, a senior local leader said on Tuesday.
"Those people who represent the old Tibet, with the Dalai Lama as their leader, and the so-called Tibetan government-in-exile, have been encouraging all kinds of extreme, violent behaviors to disrupt the peaceful life of the Tibetan people. Their attempts, with the aim to separate Tibet from China, are not supported by the people and will end in vain," said Padma Choling, chairman of Southwest China's Tibet autonomous region.
He made the remarks during a televised speech broadcast across the region on Tuesday night to mark the 53rd Serf Liberation Day, which falls on March 28 every year.
On March 28, 1959, the central government carried out the long-delayed emancipation of millions of serfs and slaves in Tibet after the failed rebellion by the Dalai Lama and his followers.
Tibet used to be a society of feudal serfdom under theocratic rule. Under such a regime, people were divided into three major strata, with about 90 percent of the population slaves or serfs.
"Those people who represent the old Tibet and the so-called Tibetan government-in-exile are not willing to accept the fact that the so-called heavenly Tibet under the former feudal serfdom is in the past," Padma said.
He said no matter what kind of tricks the Dalai Lama clique plays to separate the region from China and restore the regime of combined politics with religious power, they will fail.
Padma also noted that religious freedom is highly respected in Tibet. There are more than 1,700 sites for religious activities, and 46,000 monks and nuns in the autonomous region.
Padma has blamed Tibetan separatist forces as the ones behind a series of self-immolations carried out by Buddhist monks and nuns in recent years, in various places in Tibetan-inhabited areas.
"The Dalai Lama clique encourages and supports such extreme behavior and treats people who commit self-immolation as so-called heroes," he said in an interview earlier this month.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei also said on Tuesday at a routine briefing that the Dalai Lama clique has been sparing no efforts to incite Tibetan independence activities by creating various kinds of trouble.
Rioting and attacks against police and public property in Tibetan-inhabited Luhuo and Sertar counties, in Southwest China's Sichuan province, in late January left two rioters dead, and 24 police officers and firemen injured.
Evidence showed that the riots and assaults were planned and instigated by trained separatists, according to the Sichuan government's information office.