News / Asia

VOA Denies Chinese Allegations on Tibetan Self-Immolations

VOA Denies Chinese Allegations on Tibetan Self-Immolationsi
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February 07, 2013 12:47 AM
The Voice of America has denied Chinese allegations that VOA is encouraging Tibetan protesters to set themselves on fire.
VOA Denies Chinese Allegations on Tibetan Self-Immolations
The Voice of America has denied Chinese allegations that VOA is encouraging Tibetan protesters to set themselves on fire. 
 
The allegations were made by the official China Daily newspaper and a program broadcast by Chinese state television, CCTV.  VOA Director David Ensor said the allegations were totally false and called on China Daily and CCTV to retract their stories.
 
The CCTV program included a segment showing a man in a hospital bed identified as a Tibetan who tried to self-immolate but failed. The man was depicted saying he set himself on fire after watching VOA.
 
“I did it after watching VOA,” he told the CCTV interviewer. “I saw the photographs of self-immolators being commemorated. They were treated like heroes.” 
 
VOA Director Ensor said the allegations were “totally false,” adding that the self-immolations are tragic and a sign of distress in Tibet. “We report them. We certainly don’t encourage them,” Ensor said. 
 
Ensor also noted that the CCTV program accused VOA of using secret code to send messages to people inside Tibet at the direction of the Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama - a charge he called “absurd.” 
 
VOA’s Tibetan Service chief, Losang Gyatso, also denied that any news reports were influenced by the Dalai Lama or the Tibetan government in exile. He noted that VOA Tibetan's news reports often present the views of Chinese officials. 
 
VOA has provided extensive coverage of the nearly 100 Tibetans who have self-immolated since 2009.

In October 2012, VOA reported that China began offering large cash rewards for information on those planning or encouraging self-immolations.  

Two months later, the Tibetan government-in-exile slammed China's arrests of a monk and his nephew on charges of inciting eight Tibetans to self-immolate near the flashpoint Kirti monastery in southwest Sichuan province. At that time, an exile government spokesman warned that any Chinese measures further stifling "the voice of the Tibetan people" would only make matters worse for "desperate" Tibetans.

Last week, China convicted the two Tibetans of "intentional homicide," condemning the 40-year-old monk to death with a two-year reprieve, a sentence that often amounts to life in prison.  The 31-year-old nephew was given a 10-year prison term.

Many Tibetans in China and elsewhere accuse the Beijing government of an ongoing campaign of religious persecution.  Critics also point to the massive influx of ethnic Han Chinese into historically Tibetan regions and say the growing Chinese presence threatens the continuing existence of Tibetan customs and culture.

China flatly rejects those accusations.  Beijing routinely boasts of huge infrastructure investments in Tibetan areas, and says they have measurably improved the standard of living for Tibetans.

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Comments
     
by: H
February 09, 2013 9:13 AM
I can never figure it out why VOA is so hostile towards China and Chinese people. Since I was a high school student, I found VOA in most times fire up hostile and hate towards Chinese Communist Party and Chinese people, and today, after more than 25 years, VOA is still doing so. Why?
In Response

by: a chinese from: china
February 10, 2013 5:33 AM
I am a Chinese high school students, for which I have the same feeling, a few days ago I saw a Japanese no in a commentary on the said China and Chinese is not good

by: musaw melake
February 08, 2013 6:35 AM
Being an apparatus of the US govt. it does not surprize anyone if the allegatins are true, for the VOA has been a pivital player in intelligence gathering and sibversive acts both during and afterthe cold war. As a result many regional powers, especially in the Indian ocean region, wanted VOA stations removed from their neighbourhoods. Times may have changed and the same regional players, after becomming friends with Uncle Sam, might have shifted stance, but the facts remain straitforward!

by: Yoshi from: Sapporo
February 08, 2013 3:35 AM
I could say it again that it is a usual manner for China to shift its responsibility to others.

by: carin from: california usa
February 07, 2013 11:29 AM
Why does not the Chinese government listen to the self simulators,they say: get out of our country,you are oppressing us.

we want freedom from you,very simple and they know it .Just easier to lay the blame else where and have the opportunity to try to keep a paper quiet,very dark of you.very unpleasant!

by: wang from: zz
February 06, 2013 9:22 PM
VOA, is it a news agency in a democratic country? has it grown up in a Christian country? Does it respect the living right of people? it is so doubtable.
In Response

by: John mou from: zhejiang province
February 07, 2013 10:30 AM
Chinese government is manipulated by a mafia,almost everything in china are controlled by them.If Americans want to do some business with thus country,they should give up some principle such as justice and morality. American government has conceded for the sake of material interests. And one news agent can't defend itself when confronted with china's propagandist leviathan. when china is ruined by the mafia and Chinese people ,will American welcome those fled from china.In fact, a lot of corrupt Chinese officials have lived in America.

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