(TibetanReview.net, May02, 2016) – A prominent Uyghur leader and eight Chinese activists, all based abroad, were among some 69 foreign delegates who took part in the conference on democracy in China held at Dharamshala, India, over Apr 28-May 1, reported hindustantimes.com May 1. The report said the delegates called on Tibet’s exiled spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, on Apr 28.
It said that while the Dalai Lama spoke about secularism, ethics, compassion and harmony, Dr Yang Jianli, a leader of the 1989 Tiananmen Square democracy protest and head of the US-based NGO ‘Initiatives for China’ which organized the conference, talked about freedom from “Chinese tyranny and oppression”.
The conference, whose theme was ‘Strengthening Our Alliance to Advance the People’s Dream: Freedom, Justice, Equality and Peace’, was held behind closed doors, without access to the media, under pressure from Indian authorities who feared offending China.
India had earlier withdrawn the visa granted to Xinjiang Uyghur activist Dolkun Isa who heads the Munich-based World Uyghur Congress after Chinese criticism. However, the president of the Uyghur American Association Ilshat Hasan was among those who attended the conference, the report said.
India had also denied visas to US-based Ms Lu Jinghua, also a Tiananmen Square protest leader, and 22-year-old Wong Toi Yeung from the Hong Kong democracy movement, on procedural grounds. The report did not say who the eight overseas Chinese dissidents who were able to attend the conference were.