Speaking at French Senate, or the upper house, Jean Francois Humbert passionately spoke about the grave situation inside Tibet, urging France and EU members to take a stronger stance on Tibet and Human Rights while dealing with China.
“France and the European Union must speak clearly on the issue of Tibet, and what they consider to be unacceptable to the Beijing authorities,” said Humbert, President of the Tibet Group at the French parliament.
“I want to call the attention of the Senate today to the very serious issue of genocide, to recall that one of them is under way today on the high Tibetan plateau.”
He said that the physical genocide of Tibetan people in the early part of China’s occupation has been followed by what the Dalai Lama calls “Cultural Genocide” in Tibet.
“There are other ways to get rid of a people than trying to physically eliminate the men and women who constitute a nation. It is enough to deprive the people of their language, culture, and memory. This is the strategy that is being implemented, in a very conscious and systematic way by the Chinese authorities in Tibet. Behind the facade of autonomy and rights recognized in theory by the so-called ‘national minorities’ in the Chinese Constitution, the reality is that of a policy of forced assimilation. The Tibetan language is being marginalised in the educational and professional practice, names of places are always Sinicized, Tibetan religion is being denigrated and is under constant surveillance,” the Senator added.
Calling on France and her European partners, the Senator appealed, “We cannot escape responsibility. There is no point in recognising past genocides if we do not care about the ones in progress. The first battle to be fought is primarily that of the truth. As the perpetrators of genocide always take advantage of the silence of nations. Silence is complicity. Only then, on a second step, the chain on the Tibetan people can come loose”.