From 1959 to the 1970’s, the borders of Tibet were completely closed under China’s occupation. Starting in the 1980’s, a few thousand Tibetans have been able to escape China’s oppression annually by fleeing their beloved homeland. But Chinese security forces reacted to widespread peaceful protests in 2008 by ratcheting up highly technical surveillance methods and closing down the borders.
Getting out of Tibet involves dangerous treks through snowy mountain passes guarded by heavily armed Chinese police. ICT has documented numerous instances of Tibetans dying before reaching freedom.
This tragic toll includes a 17-year-old Tibetan nun who was shot and killed in 2006 by Chinese police as she attempted to cross the Himalayas on her way to neighboring Nepal. She was just a 20-minute walk from the border when she died in reddening snow.
ICT is making encouraging progress in promoting more independent access to Tibet and bringing hope to 6 million Tibetans imprisoned in their own land. Congressional passage of the Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act in 2018 was an important breakthrough. This law denies entry to the US by Chinese government officials responsible for denying access to Tibet to US citizens. Ongoing ICT activism is also making headway for similar measures across Europe.
But to keep the momentum going, we need allies like you to take a stand for human rights. Will you show your support by signing up as an Ally for Tibet and calling for access to the Land of Snows?