Today's White House meeting between His Holiness the Dalai Lama and President Obama adds considerable momentum and energy to our work.
Coming on the heels of the ninth round of dialogue between the Dalai Lama's envoys and China, the time could not be better for us to forge ahead with our action plan for 2010 that I recently shared with you by email.
Reuters reported yesterday that Tibetans living near the birthplace of the Dalai Lama in northwest China welcomed today's meeting with a defiant show of fireworks. The article quotes several Tibetans in the region, including a monk named Johkang:
"My heart is filled with joy," said Johkang, showing off an enormous smile, standing at his monastery in this arid and mountainous part of the Qinghai province, which lies next to the official Tibet Autonomous Region.
"It is so important for us that this is happening, that the U.S. has not given in to threats and will meet our leader," added the monk, who like many ethnic Tibetans goes only by one name.
President Barack Obama meeting with His Holiness the Dalai Lama earlier today (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
Today's meeting is vivid proof that together we can make a difference and move forward to the benefit of the Tibetan people. And together, we can ensure that we are able to make the most of the events and opportunities ahead.
Please take these two important steps today:
1. Thank President Obama for meeting with the Dalai Lama, and encourage him to make real progress for Tibet this year.
2 Support ICT with a small donation to ensure we'll be able to make the most of the opportunities ahead. Your gift will empower our exceptionally important work this year:
- Shining an international spotlight on the cases of political prisoners, fighting for fair trials and impartial legal representation for those detained.
- Monitoring and advocating to improve the conditions that threaten the safe transit of Tibetan refugees across the Himalayas, through Nepal and onward to freedom in exile.
- Continuing the tireless efforts of our research and field teams to document, report and amplify the voices from inside Tibet.
- Pressing for critical funding from Congress for programs that help meet the urgent needs of Tibetans now and will protect the unique Tibetan identity into the future.
- Continuing to connect Tibetans and Chinese in discussions that foster mutual understanding and common approaches to resolving their differences.
- Making certain the new, emerging diplomatic strategy of the Obama Administration delivers real support to the Tibetan people and advances a solution for Tibet.
We do this work for the sake of our Tibetan friends, to stand up for the human rights and freedoms of our fellow man, and because we believe His Holiness the Dalai Lama's vision for the people of Tibet is achievable.
And I know we will succeed because we have your support. Together, let's make this our best year ever on behalf of Tibet.
Mary Beth Markey
VP, International Advocacy
P.S. Please don't forget to send a message to President Obama today to thank him for meeting with the Dalai Lama.
P.P.S. Please know that if you can support ICT at this time, even $5 or $10 will make a big difference in our ability to create progress for the Tibetan people this year. Thank you.