Beijing Says ‘No Need to Sweat’ Tibet

In the wake of extensive Western media coverage of protests and violent police action in Tibetan populated regions of western China, Global Times says there is “no need to sweat over minor unrest”:

[…]As long as China remains stable as a whole, the specific problems in the border areas can be kept under control. We should have faith in this.

We should also avoid being impatient. It is not us, but people like the aging Dalai Lama who should worry.

As long as we accept the reality that some incidents are inevitable in parts of Chinese society, including Tibet and Xinjiang, much of the air attached to the Dalai Lama’s political power will be squeezed out.

[…]The unrest that the world usually sees hides the firm foundation of stability in Chinese society.

About 80 percent of urban households own their houses, and the social security system is expanding to rural areas. All these are foundations for national stability.

Regardless of the Global Times article’s tranquil tone and characterization of “minor unrest” as inevitable, state-owned media has been pointing fingers in the usual direction to explain the situation. AFP offers summary and commentary on a recent China Daily report:

China has blamed “trained separatists” for a wave of unrest in Tibetan-inhabited areas last week that left at least two people dead and dozens injured, state press reported Wednesday.

[…]”Initial evidence showed that the riots and assaults were well planned beforehand and instigated by trained separatists against the country,” the official China Daily newspaper said, citing the Sichuan government.

It said protesters attacked police stations with stones and molotov cocktails, prompting the police to take action and “defend themselves”.

[…]Tibetans have long chafed under Chinese rule, saying they suffer religious repression and government surveillance, and that their culture is gradually being eroded by an influx of majority Han Chinese into the areas they live in.

Beijing, though, insists that Tibetans enjoy freedom of religious belief and says their lives have been made better by huge ongoing investment into Tibetan-inhabited areas.

An editorial in China Daily accuses the Tibetan Government-in-Exile and the West for exaggerating recent incidents in Sichuan, and suggests that the West should shoulder some of the blame for the unrest:

It is not uncommon for some Western governments and the so-called Tibetan government-in-exile to play up and distort incidents, such as the one last week between the law enforcement forces and local residents in Ganzi Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan Province.

[…]”Overseas forces promoting ‘independence for Tibet’ have always fabricated rumors and distorted the truth to discredit the Chinese government with issues involving Tibet,” said Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei.

[…]It is always easier to destroy than to maintain order and build. In today’s world, a handful of extremists have the ability to cause havoc to a region or even a country, never mind the Dalai Lama clique, which cloaks its real agenda behind religion and which is financed and supported by some Western governments and media with their own agenda against China. It is obvious that they are capable of causing trouble now and then in the Tibetan-inhabited regions.

Also see coverage of the Tibetan Government-in-Exile’s response to the unrest in Tibet, and of a school in Qinghai province working to preserve Tibetan language and culture, both via CDT.

February 2, 2012 1:19 AM
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