Tibet Advocacy Project
Australia can play a constructive role in the resolution of the Tibet-China conflict. ATC is committed to making Tibet an important part of a deepening Australia-China relationship and in leveraging Australia’s growing importance as the global power shifts from the west to the east.
Our strength in building political support comes from our movement of 20,000-strong Australians.
Translating our strong public support into real political action for Tibet is a key goal at ATC.
We work closely with the Australian All-Party Parliamentary Group for Tibet in Canberra, a cross-party group of members from both houses of the Parliament. They keep the Tibet issue on the parliamentary agenda through motions and statements and raise the issue with the government through questions to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and meetings with the foreign minister. Members also participate in meetings with visiting Tibetan leaders including the Dalai Lama in the Parliament, take part in parliamentary delegations to Dharamsala and speak at rallies and public forums across the country.
The Tibet Advocacy Day is our annual lobbying initiative for Tibet in the Parliament. Members of Australia’s Tibetan community visit Parliament House every March, brief parliamentarians on the latest situation in Tibet and call for stronger political support.
2017, the sixth Tibet Advocacy Day in Australia, will see our largest delegation ever, with 14 delegates and four mentors. They will discuss China’s intensifying crackdown on the Tibetans’ freedom of religion and push for a visit to Tibet by Australian parliamentarians.
Along with Tibet Information Office, we work towards building political support for the Dalai Lama and the democratically elected Tibetan leadership in exile.
Australian politicians, media and the public gave a strong endorsement to Sikyong Dr Lobsang Sangay as he visited Australia in August 2012 for the first time since taking over Tibet's political leadership from the Dalai Lama.
A parliamentary delegation to Dharamsala is an important step in Australia’s support for Tibet. We have been involved in organising two parliamentary delegations to the Tibetan exile capital in India, the most recent in July 2012.
After meeting with Tibetan political and community leaders, students, former political prisoners and artists in Dharamsala, politicians have invariably returned with a deeper appreciation of the Tibet issue. Back in Australia, they become strong voices for Tibet in the Parliament.
Tibetans and ATC supporters walked across the Sydney Harbour Bridge on Sunday to shine a spotlight on China’s latest attacks at two major Buddhist centres in Tibet, Larung Gar and Yachen Gar. The recent demolitions of buildings and eviction of hundreds of monks and nuns from the two monasteries are part of an intensifying political and religious repression in Tibet. By 2017, China plans to cut the population of 10,000 at Larung Gar by half.
Last week, we hosted a visit to Australia by Tibetan former political prisoner Golog Jigme as part of our campaign to amplify Tibetan voices and counter China’s propaganda on Tibet. This visit on the back of growing Chinese influence in Australia could not have been more timely.
Thank you to everyone who have helped us in making this visit possible.
Many politicians are aware of China’s human rights record in Tibet. On our 5th Tibet Advocacy Day, we opened their eyes to the global consequences of China’s occupation of Tibet and its flawed policies on the Tibetan environment.
We are inspired by what we have achieved on Tibet Advocacy Day:
- The Australian parliament debated on the first motion on the Tibetan environment
- Four politicians from the two major parties spoke out on this important issue in both houses
- Over 20 politicians added their names to a joint letter to the Chinese Ambassador, calling on China to end the forced removal of Tibetan nomads from their grasslands