Tibet Society is calling on French President Emmanuel Macron to use next week’s visit to China to raise the case of Tashi Wangchuk, a young Tibetan shopkeeper who has been detained and charged with “inciting separatism” after he openly urged for greater Tibetan language education in schools.
On 29 December 2017, his lawyer Liang Xiaojun tweeted news that Tashi Wangchuk’s trial will be held on 4 January 2018 at 9.30am at Yushu Prefecture’s Intermediate Court (Qinghai). President Emmanuel Macron will visit China for three days starting 8 January 2018; just days after Tashi Wangchuk’s trial commences.
“President Macron should make it clear in his discussion with President Xi Jinping that human rights, including the peaceful exercise of freedom of expression and cultural rights, must be non-negotiable,” said Gloria Montgomery, Head of Advocacy and Campaigns at Tibet Society.
“While in China, President Macron must call on his Chinese counterpart to drop the politically motivated and trumped-up charges against Tashi Wangchuk, who has spent over 700 days in detention for his work in calling for greater Tibetan language rights. The Chinese authorities should immediately repeal or substantially amend the repressive laws under which Tashi is being charged.”
Tashi Wangchuck has been detained since 27 January 2016. While in detention, Tashi reported being tortured and subjected to degrading treatment. He was beaten and his interrogators threatened him with harming his family. During Tashi Wangchuk’s year in detention his lawyers, Lin Qilei and Liang Xiaojun have only been able to visit him four times.
If found guilty, he could face up to 15 years imprisonment.
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