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Challenge China to Free Tibet
Xi Jinping needs to hear that religious freedom is the only way to stop self-immolations.
By Elliott Abrams and Azizah Al-Hibri
Source – Wall Street Journal, published April 21, 2013
When Kal Kyi, a 30-year-old mother of four, set herself on fire in March to protest Chinese repression of Tibet, she joined a grim and growing fellowship of despair. Over the past four years, 112 Tibetans have immolated themselves in protest against Chinese oppression.
Tibet is burning, and the world community, including the U.S., must speak out. China’s new president, Xi Jinping, and the rest of its leadership must be persuaded that its interests lie with respecting human rights, particularly freedom of religion, and to restart discussions with Tibet’s exiled leader, the Dalai Lama.
Unfortunately, persuading Beijing is no simple task. China’s rulers have dug in their heels on Tibet as self-immolations continue to mount. They have expanded repressive measures while accusing foreign forces of fueling Tibetan grievances.
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