(TibetanReview.net, May03’19) – Britain’s Secretary of State for International Development has on May 1 undertaken to seek ways to support the culture and heritage of the Tibetan people after the issue was raised in the House of Commons by Rt Hon Tim Loughton, who is Co-Chair of All Party Parliamentary Group for Tibet.
The Secretary, Rt Hon Penelope Mary Mordaunt, has said in Oral Answers to Questions that her ministry’s Department for International Development (DeFiD) provides funding to the UN Refugee Agency to prioritise the greatest humanitarian and protection needs of refugees globally and this included Tibetan refugees in need of urgent life-saving assistance.
“Can we do more to help these refugees in their culture and education programmes which they value so much?” Loughton asked.
Mordaunt has again emphasized that the DeFID’s funding was very much focused on education and also on humanitarian assistance and support for refugees.
And she has then said, “I will undertake to talk to my colleagues both at the DCMS (Department for Culture, Media and Sport) and FCO (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) to find out what more we can do to support the culture and heritage of the Tibetan people.”
Loughton has made the point that he would be attending the 7th World Parliamentarians’ Convention on Tibet, along with Member for Dundee, to mark 60 years of the invasion and oppression of the Tibetan people, a million lives lost, oppression of culture, language and human rights of those people. He has further said many of them were refugees in Dharamshala, India, “in desperate need of our help to keep the spirit of Tibet alive.”
Following Mordaunt’s response, Hon Kerry McCarthy, a Member of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Tibet, has remarked, “I am very glad Minister has taken an interest in Tibet. I would also urge her to look at the impact of climate change on what is often dubbed as the Third Pole – melting of Himalayan glaciers, which has a huge impact on Tibetan area and is overlooked when we talk about climate change”
Mordaunt has since been appointed Defence Secretary on May 1 itself after Gavin Williamson was dismissed by Prime Minister Theresa May following a leak of highly classified information from the National Security Council. It followed an inquiry into a leak over a plan to allow Huawei – a leading if controversial global provider from China of information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure and smart devices – limited access in connection with the UK’s 5G network.