Keep meet low-key, govt tells Chinese dissidents

Keep meet low-key, govt tells Chinese dissidents

New Delhi has not yet asked organisers to call off meet

Keep meet low-key, govt tells Chinese dissidents
Chinese dissidents seeking democracy in the communist country will go ahead with their proposed meet in India this week, but New Delhi advised them to avoid media glare.

New Delhi has not yet asked the organisers of the conference to call it off, but has advised them to keep it low-profile, avoiding media as much as possible. The conference will be held at Dharamshala in Himachal Pradesh – the seat of the Tibetan government-in-exile. The Dalai Lama, the icon of movement against China’s “occupation” of Tibet, will receive the delegates and address them.

Yang Jianli, chief organiser of the conference, arrived in Dharamshala on Monday. Sources told DH that the Indian government has advised the organisers through Dalai Lama’s office and the Tibetan government-in-exile to keep the event low key, ostensibly to avoid hurting sensitivities of China. 
Yang, a 1989 Tiananmen Square activist, is among the most prominent exiled pro-democracy dissidents of China. He lives in the US and runs the organisation Citizen Power for China, which is organising the conference in Dharamshala from April 28 to May 1. He arrived in New Delhi from Taiwan and reached Dharamshala on Monday.

Earlier conferences

The Citizen Power for China earlier organised similar conference in Boston, California, Taipei and Washington DC. This is the first time it is being held in India.

Yang’s organisation claimed that the annual conference had become “the single most important united forum for planning and pursuing a peaceful transition to democracy in China”.  

Apart from Chinese pro-democracy activists, the participants will include representatives of the China’s ethnic and religious minorities like Tibetans, Uyghurs, Mongolians, Christians, Falun Gong practitioners, Muslims and Buddhists, as well as delegates from Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau.

In the wake of strong protests by Beijing, New Delhi has cancelled the visa issued to Uyghur leader Dolkun Isa, who was dubbed as a “terrorist” by China.
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