Resolutely Safeguarding National Unity and Social Stability

Updated: 2021-05-21 (Xinhua) Print

National unity and social stability are important guarantors of all the undertakings of Tibet, and a solid buttress ensuring a happy life for all ethnic groups in Tibet. Over the years, Western anti-China forces have used Tibet as a pretext to disrupt China and interfere with its development, and the 14th Dalai Lama and his supporters have continued to try to promote "Tibetan independence" by provoking incidents to jeopardize peace and stability in Tibet. The Chinese government has taken effective measures to maintain social stability and harmony in the region.

– The Western anti-China forces' attempts to create disorder in Tibet to contain China

Over the years, Western anti-China forces have continued to interfere in China's Tibetan affairs in an attempt to sabotage its social stability. Prior to liberation, the US government had already established contacts with pro-imperialist separatists in Tibet. In the mid-1950s, the CIA helped to train Tibetan separatists in Colorado to carry out violent activities. During the armed rebellion in Tibet in 1959, the CIA helped the 14th Dalai Lama flee and airdropped a large quantity of weaponry to support rebel forces. The CIA was also in direct command of a rebel organization named "Four Rivers and Six Ranges", providing it with weapons and training instructors.

Since the 1980s, Western forces have played an active role in all the outbreaks of unrest that have taken place in Tibet. In recent years, Western anti-China forces have intensified such efforts. Using the "Tibetan issue" as the excuse, the US government has enacted the Tibetan Policy Act of 2002, the Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act of 2018, and the Tibetan Policy and Support Act of 2020, to interfere in China's domestic affairs.

– The 14th Dalai group and their attempts to divide China

In 1959, after the failure of their armed rebellion, the reactionaries of Tibet's ruling class fled to India. They subsequently began to campaign for "Tibetan independence" by force. Later, with the support of the US, they reorganized the "Four Rivers and Six Ranges" rebel organization, and set up a military base in Mustang, a county in Nepal, to engage in long-term attacks across the China-Nepal borders. In 1962, with support from external powers, they built a para-commando force composed of mainly Tibetan exiles to harass Chinese border troops and civilians along the China-India border.

From the late 1970s, under pressure from significant shifts in the international landscape, the 14th Dalai Lama and his supporters began to alter their tactics.

On the one hand, they continued to provoke incidents of violence to keep up pressure on the central government. For example, in 1987, 1988 and 1989 they planned and instigated multiple violent incidents. In 2008, they planned and executed violent riots in Lhasa on March 14 and launched a number of international incidents designed to sabotage the preparations for the Beijing Olympic Games. Since 2011, the 14th Dalai Lama and his supporters have incited Tibetan lamas and lay followers inside China to engage in acts of self-immolation, and released a Self-Immolation Guide on the internet, giving rise to a surge of self-immolation incidents in some parts of China.

On the other hand, they proclaimed a commitment to "non-violence" and the "middle way". At the Congressional Human Rights Caucus in 1987 in Washington DC, the 14th Dalai Lama proposed a Five-Point Peace Plan and in 1988, in Strasbourg in France, he put forward the Strasbourg Proposal. In 2008, the Dalai group presented the Memorandum on Genuine Autonomy for the Tibetan People.

The claims of the "middle way" can be summarized as follows:

• It denies the fact that Tibet has been an integral part of China since ancient times; instead it claims that Tibet was "an independent state".

• It seeks to establish a "Greater Tibet" that has never existed at any time in history, claiming that Tibet, Sichuan, Yunnan, Gansu, Qinghai and other areas inhabited by compact communities of both Tibetans and people of other ethnic minorities should be incorporated into a unified administrative region.

• It demands "a high degree of autonomy" that is not subject to any constraint whatsoever from the central government, and denies the leadership of the central government and Tibet's present social and political systems; it proposes to establish an "autonomous government" under which "Tibetans (in truth the Dalai group) take full charge of all affairs other than diplomacy and national defense".

• It opposes the central government's right to garrison troops in Tibet. Despite its superficial agreement that the central government holds the authority over national defense, it demands that the central government "withdraw all Chinese troops" to turn Tibet into an "international zone of peace".

• In total disregard of the fact that the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau has been a multiethnic region since ancient times, it demands that other ethnic groups be driven out of regions where they have lived for generations.

The "middle way" does not tally with China's history, national reality, state Constitution, laws and basic systems. Neither does it conform to Tibet's history, reality and ethnic relations. Moreover, it runs counter to the fundamental interests of all the people of China, including the Tibetans.

– Resolutely safeguarding national security and Tibet's stability

All experience since liberation has proved that without national security, the fundamental interests of the ethnic groups of Tibet cannot be protected. Without a stable social environment, there will be no economic, cultural or eco-environmental development, nor can the people's right to a stable and happy life be guaranteed. Over the years, the 14th Dalai Lama and his followers, supported by Western anti-China forces, have contributed nothing positive to the social solidarity and progress of Tibet.

Since the 14th Dalai Lama fled abroad in 1959, the central government has exercised great restraint and done its best to provide solutions, for example preserving his position as a vice-chairman of the NPC Standing Committee until 1964. After reform and opening up, the central government offered the 14th Dalai Lama an opportunity to accept the policy that "all patriots belong to one big family, whether they embrace patriotism earlier or later," and invited him to send representatives to return home for a visit. The central government received 13 visits by private representatives of the 14th Dalai Lama between 1979 and 2002, and granted approval to ten visits from 2002 to 2010. But to the disappointment of the central government, the Dalai Lama has refused to relinquish his political demands.

All the people of China, including the Tibetans, will resolutely safeguard national unity, protect national sovereignty, and fight all separatists and anti-China forces, particularly Western anti-China forces. Steadfast under the twin banners of the Constitution and the law, Tibet has firmly resisted infiltration and sabotage by the 14th Dalai Lama and his supporters, continued to build the region into a place of ethnic solidarity and progress, strengthened the keen sense of identity of the Chinese nation, stayed committed to managing religion in the Chinese context, and guided Tibetan Buddhism to adapt to socialist society and become a bastion of stability in the region.