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China continues to demonize Dalai Lama: US Report

Maintaining that there is no let up in human rights violations in China, the US on Friday accused Beijing of demonizing the Dalai Lama and committing atrocities against the Tibetan people.



Washington: Maintaining that there is no
let up in human rights violations in China, the US on Friday
accused Beijing of demonizing the Dalai Lama and committing
atrocities against the Tibetan people.

"In China, the government continued to demonize the
Dalai Lama and harshly repress Uighur Muslims in Xinjiang and
Tibetan Buddhists," said a State Department`s Country Reports
on Human Rights Practices for 2010.

This report provides encyclopedic detail on human
rights conditions in over 190 countries for 2010.
Released by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the
report said in China, the negative trend in key areas of
human rights continued.

The government stepped up restrictions on lawyers,
activists, bloggers and journalists; tightened controls on
civil society; and increased attempts to limit freedom of
speech and control the press, the Internet, and Internet
access in 2010, the report alleged.

Authorities also increased the use of extralegal
measures, including forced disappearances, strict house
arrest, arbitrary detention in "black jails, and other forms
of soft detention" to silence independent voices and punish
activists and their families, it said.

Legal activist Chen Guangcheng, along with his wife
and child, remained under house arrest, as did other released
political prisoners.

Public interest lawyers, who operated within China`s
legal framework, were disbarred, beaten, or "disappeared" for
taking on the defense of clients and issues deemed sensitive
by the government, it said.

"Bloggers and Web masters have been arrested and
charged with subverting state power for re-tweeting a post or
operating a Web site where others posted comments. The
government also continued its severe cultural and religious
repression of ethnic minorities in the Xinjiang Uighur
Autonomous Region and Tibetan areas," the report said.

In a special section on Tibet, the report said there
was severe repression of freedoms of speech, religion,
association, and movement.

The intensified controls applied following the March
2008 riots and unrest in Tibetan areas eased somewhat after
the second anniversary of the unrest and its suppression.

"Authorities continued to commit serious human rights
abuses, including extrajudicial killings, torture, arbitrary
arrests, extrajudicial detention, and house arrest. The
preservation and development of Tibet`s unique religious,
cultural, and linguistic heritage remained a concern," it
said.

The fallout from the March 2008 protests continued to
affect the human rights situation in Tibetan regions, the
report said, adding that a number of Tibetans, especially
monks, remained incarcerated for their role in the 2008
protests and riots.

People`s Armed Police (PAP) presence remained at
historically high levels in many communities across the
Tibetan Plateau.

"In March all major monasteries in Lhasa were guarded
by security forces. On March 14, many shops in the city closed
to mark the anniversary of the demonstrations and the police
crackdown. Students in many areas protested; in southern Gansu
Province, students reportedly protested for freedom, human
rights, and in support of the Dalai Lama," the report said.

The State Department alleged that the security regime
employed torture and degrading treatment in dealing with some
detainees and prisoners.

Tibetans repatriated from Nepal reportedly suffered
torture, including electric shocks, exposure to cold, and
severe beatings, and were forced to perform heavy physical
labor. Prisoners were subjected routinely to "political
investigation" sessions and were punished if deemed
insufficiently loyal to the state, it said.

Tibetans who spoke to foreign reporters, attempted to
relay information to foreigners outside the country, or passed
information regarding the 2008 protests were subject to
harassment or detention. During 2009, 59 individuals were
convicted for "creating and spreading rumors" after the 2008
unrest, it said.

PTI

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