Tibetan autonomy struggle likely to go independence way

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Guwahati, Apr 9 (UNI) Total independence could soon be the slogan of Tibet's present movement for 'genuine autonomy' under China, with the Tibetan Parliament in-exile, itself a divided house on the issue, mooting a people's vote to decide the matter.

Interacting with reporters here today, Tibetan Parliament in-exile member Karma Yeshi said there were differences of opinion on whether Tibet should go for independence or settle for autonomy under China, adding that it could be decided conclusively only by the people in Tibet.

''The Tibetan government in-exile won't decide this issue without taking the verdict of those who actually live in Tibet in a free and fair manner. If the majority Tibetans want independence, we will strive for it,''he said.

Mr Yeshi indicated that there was a considerable population that wanted complete independence and the various Tibetan communities in other parts of the world were also not totally against it.

Mr Yeshi and his colleague Dawa Tsering are in the city to lead a three-day protest by North-East Tibetans against the ''brutal'' crackdown on Tibetan protestors by China.

'A funeral procession to mourn China's massacre in Tibet' was taken out today in a restricted manner after the local administration denied permission for a complete rally. A hunger strike was organised yesterday, while a skit show on the present situation in Tibet is slated for tomorrow.

The Tibetan MPs urged for a bigger role of India in restoring human rights in Tibet and also appealed to the international community to press China to lift its restrictions in Tibet.

They reiterated that Tibet was not against the Olympics and the torch rally had been shrouded in controversy due to the 'brutality' of China on Tibetan protestors.


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