News / Asia

Tibetan Filmmaker Released from Prison

Dhondup Wangchen after his release from prison, Qinghai province, China, June 5, 2014.
Dhondup Wangchen after his release from prison, Qinghai province, China, June 5, 2014.
Tsering Kyi
Family members of Tibetan filmmaker Dhondup Wangchen say he was released from prison Thursday after serving a six year sentence in China.

They say after his release in Qinghai's provincial capital of Xining, he was driven about two hours to his sister's house.

The self-taught cameraman and video-activist was arrested in 2008 after travelling across Tibet with his assistant to film the documentary "Leaving Fear Behind." He was later convicted of shooting a film without permission.
 
Dhondup Wangchen after his release from prison, Qinghai province, China, June 5, 2014.Dhondup Wangchen after his release from prison, Qinghai province, China, June 5, 2014.
x
Dhondup Wangchen after his release from prison, Qinghai province, China, June 5, 2014.
Dhondup Wangchen after his release from prison, Qinghai province, China, June 5, 2014.
Dhondup Wangchen's assistant, Golog Jigme, recently arrived in Dharamsala, India after an epic escape from China that involved walking through some of the highest and most rugged land in the world.  

Speaking from Switzerland, his cousin Jamyang Tsultrim told VOA's Tibetan service the filmmaker suffered in prison because of kidney problems.  

"I asked him how his health was and he said that he wasn’t doing that well and that his immediate concern is to be able to see his parents and reunite with his wife and children," said Jamyang.

His wife, Lhamo Tso, who now lives in the western U.S. city of San Francisco, said she was left speechless when she heard her husband's voice on the phone Thursday.

"My children and I, and my husband’s parents, have waited and worried all these years. But when I was able to talk to my husband this morning, I couldn’t say anything but cry," said Lhamo.

“Leaving Fear Behind” has been translated into a dozen languages and has been screened in more than 30 countries worldwide. In the documentary, ordinary Tibetan farmers and nomads talk about their lives and a desire to see the Dalai Lama return to his homeland.

Chinese officials have not offered any comment on Dhondup Wangchen's release.

This report was produced in collaboration with the VOA Tibetan service.

You May Like

Philippines, Muslim Rebels Try to Salvage Peace Pact

Peace process faces major setback after botched military operation to find terrorists results in bloody gunbattle between government forces, Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters More

Republicans Expect Long, Expensive Presidential Battle

Political strategist says eventual winner will be one who can put together strongest coalition of various conservative groups that make up Republican Party More

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Engineers have come up with a lever-operated design that makes use of easily accessible bicycle technology More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: DEREK C from: KUALA LUMPUR
June 05, 2014 10:40 PM
This the typical Chinese who found a way to migrate to west, by making a film to highlight the shortcomings of the motherland. The US and the west take great pleasure to glorify traitors like him and will give refuge to him (his wife and children already in the US). He should have been shot for treason.
In Response

by: Zao Medong from: Hunan
June 06, 2014 10:15 AM
Who determine the shortcomings of the motherland? Who is responsible?

by: george from: china
June 05, 2014 6:48 PM
Where do this guy’s wife and family live in? All in USA? Well done.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More