2014 Kina: Yao Wentian

Norway, 20 May 2014

His Excellency Xi Jinping
President of the People’s Republic of China
State Council
Beijing 100032
P.R. China
Chinese Embassy in Oslo, Norway
Tuengen Alle 2B, Vinderen 0244

Oslo, Norway

Your Excellencies,

I write to you as a member of Norwegian PEN, the local section of PEN International, the writer`s and free expression organisation with 140 centres in over 100 countries around the world, including China and many other countries in your region.

Publisher Yao Wentian, aged 73, who has been held in Shenzhen since 27 October 2013, was convicted by the Shenzhen Intermediate People`s Court on the charge of “smuggling prohibited items” and sentenced to a 10-year jail term. At the time of his arrest he was preparing to publish a book by US-based dissident writer Yu Jie. PEN believes the trial and conviction to be politically motivated.

PEN is expressing serious concern for the heavy sentencing and health of Yao Wentian, and calls for his immediate and unconditional release if, as feared, he is being persecuted for his professional activities through politically-motivated criminal charges.

PEN is also protesting the renewed crackdown on government critics, and would like to remind Your Excellency, President Xi, of your commitment to tackle official corruption.

PEN would also like to remind Chinese authorities that Article 35 of the constitution of the People’s Republic of China provides for freedom of speech and that as a signatory to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which provides for freedom of legitimate expression, the right not to be arbitrarily detained and the right to a fair trial, they are obliged to “refrain from acts that would defeat or undermine the treaty’s objective and purpose”.

Yours sincerely,

Ms Trine Kleven

Chair of Writers in Prison Committee

Norwegian PEN

2014 Kina: Gao Yu

Norway, 20 May 2014

His Excellency Xi Jinping
President of the People’s Republic of China
State Council
Beijing 100032
P.R. China
Fu Zhenghua
Director, Beijing Public Security Bureau
Beijingshi Gong´anju 9 Dongdajie, Quianmen, Donchengqu
Beijing 100740

P.R. China
Chinese Embassy in Oslo, Norway
Tuengen Alle 2B, Vinderen 0244

Oslo, Norway

Your Excellencies,

I write to you as a member of Norwegian PEN, the local section of PEN International, the writer`s and free expression organisation with 140 centres in over 100 countries around the world, including China and many other countries in your region.

Journalist Gao Yu, aged 70, went missing 24 April, and is being detained by Beijing Police on the charge of “leaking state secrets abroad”. She is accused for leaking a secret document to editors of a foreign website in August 2013.

PEN is expressing serious concern for the arrest and well-being of Gao Yu, and urging that she is protected from ill-treatment and that she is granted access to family and a lawyer of her choice. PEN is also expressing concern that she has been shown “confessing” on state television, in contravention of her right to a fair trial.

Therefore, PEN is calling for her immediate and unconditional release if, as feared, she is being persecuted for her legitimate professional activities.

PEN would like to remind Chinese authorities that Article 35 of the constitution of the People’s Republic of China provides for freedom of speech and that as a signatory to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which provides for freedom of legitimate expression, the right not to be arbitrarily detained and the right to a fair trial, they are obliged to “refrain from acts that would defeat or undermine the treaty’s objective and purpose”.

Yours sincerely,

Ms Trine Kleven

Chair of Writers in Prison Committee, Norwegian PEN

www.norskpen.no

Norwegian PEN meets Dalai Lama

A delegation of members from Norwegian PEN and PEN International had a brief meeting with the Dalai Lama this morning during his visit to Oslo. The delegation, Norwegian PEN president William Nygaard, board member Peter Normann Waage and PEN International’s Vice President Eugene Schoulgin, welcomed the Dalai Lama to Norway and regretted that the Norwegian government had declined to meet with him.

«We told the Dalai Lama that the Norwegian people support him,» said Nygaard after the meeting, adding that he, on PENs behalf, was very grateful that the Dalai Lama took the time to meet representatives from the world´s biggest freedom of expression organization, before meeting with Norwegian politicians in the Parliament building. PEN referred to the defense of his case and of imprisoned Tibetans throughout more than thirty years, and said that Tibetan PEN is among the most significant PEN centers.  The Dalai Lama was glad to hear this. PEN also expressed gratitude towards the Dalai Lama for making Tibetan culture a part of the world´s cultural heritage.

The Dalai Lama was happy to be back in Norway and paid no attention to the lack of willingness the Norwegian government now has demonstrated to follow up on earlier statements. The Dalai Lama raised the Chinese people’s need for comprehensive freedom of expression. «Had it not been for the censorship in China, the Chinese people themselves could have made up their minds about what is right and what is wrong,» stressed the Dalai Lama.

At the end of the meeting, the Dalai Lama was invited back to Norway. If nothing else he could go fishing to learn more about the Norwegian culture. He laughed heartily and stressed that he happily would eat the fish, as long as he didn’t have to kill it.

9th May 2014

Norsk PEN møter Dalai Lama

En delegasjon med medlemmer fra Norsk PEN og PEN International fikk i morges et kort møte med Dalai Lama under hans Oslo-besøk.  Delegasjonen, Norsk PENs lederWilliam Nygaard og styremedlem Peter Normann Waage og PEN Internationals visepresident Eugene Schoulgin, uttrykte glede over at Dalai Lama besøker Norge og beklaget at det offisielle Norge ikke tok ham imot.

«Vi fortalte Dalai Lama at det norske folk står på hans side», sa Nygaard etter møtet.   Nygaard la til at han på PEN´s vegne var svært takknemlig over at Dalai Lama tok seg tid til et møte med representanter for verdens største ytringsfrihetsorganisasjon, før Tibets åndelige leder skulle møte norske politikere på Stortinget.  PEN fortalte om forsvaret av hans sak og av fengslede tibetanere gjennom mer enn tretti år og at tibetansk PEN er blant de viktige PEN-sentrene. Dalai Lama ble glad for å høre dette. Det ble også uttrykt takknemlighet over at Dalai Lama hadde gjort den tibetanske kulturen til en del av verdenskulturen.

Dalai Lama var glad for å være tilbake i Norge og så helt bort fra den manglende vilje til å følge opp tidligere uttalelser som den norske regjeringen har demonstrert.   Overfor PEN-delegasjonen tok Dalai Lama opp det kinesiske folks behov for ytringsfrihet.  «Hadde det ikke vært for sensuren i Kina kunne kineserne selv ha gjort seg opp en mening om hva som er rett og hva som galt», understreket Dalai Lama.

Han ble til slutt invitert tilbake- om ikke annet så på fisketur for å lære mer om den norske kulturen. Han lo hjertelig og understreket at han gjerne spiste fisken, bare han slapp å ta livet av den.

9. mai 2014

Se også oppslag på Dagbladets nettside.

Do the Chinese control the Norwegian parliament ? Norwegian politicians place business interests ahead of human rights

PRESS RELEASE

Norwegian PEN is concerned that the Norwegian Parliament sets narrow business interests ahead of the interests of human rights and human dignity. We deeply regret that many of our leading politicians , who both previously met the Dalai Lama and supported Tibetan struggle for human rights now allows the pragmatic to overshadow the principal .

Norway has long been an important country in international peace and reconciliation work and rendered significant contributions to the promotion of human rights . To show respect to the Dalai Lama as a freedom fighter and for his peaceful efforts should be a question of honor,  it concerns our self- respect and decency as a nation.  It is by our own consistent behavior that respect for human dignity could also result in a long-term dialogue on human rights with China. It is therefore important that Norway, as a small nation, has the necessary courage and integrity to stand up to one of the largest and strongest economies in the world. Who would stand against China if not the country that awarded the Nobel Peace Prize and that,  better  than most other countires, can afford to bear the cost of being principled?

Norwegian PEN believes that Norway, as a country who dares to speak out, will have a positive significance in the long run, both for the peace prize, business relations,  international peace efforts and general relations with China – but first and foremost for freedom of expression and other human rights.

On this background, the Board of Norwegian PEN strongly urge the Norwegian government to meet the Dalai Lama during his visit to Norway in May.

 

28 April 2014

Er det kineserne som styrer Stortinget?

Norske politikere setter næringsinteresser foran menneskerettigheter

PRESSEMELDING

Norsk PEN ser med bekymring på at Stortinget setter smale næringsinteresser foran hensynet til menneskerettigheter og menneskeverd.  Vi beklager sterkt at en rekke av våre sentrale politikere, som tidligere både har møtt Dalai Lama og
støttet tibetanernes kamp for menneskerettigheter nå lar det pragmatiske overskygge det prinsipielle.

Norge har lenge vært et viktig land i internasjonalt freds- og forsoningsarbeid og ytt vesentlige bidrag til arbeidet for menneskerettigheter. Å vise respekt for Dalai Lama som frihetskjemper og for hans fredelige innsats bør være  en honnørsak, det handler om vår selvrespekt og anstendighet. Det er ved vår egen konsekvente opptreden at respekten for menneskeverdet også vil kunne munne ut i en langsiktig dialog om menneskerettigheter med Kina.  Det er derfor viktig at Norge, som en liten nasjon, har mot og integritet nok til stå opp mot en av verdens største og sterkeste økonomier.  Hvem skulle stå imot Kina hvis det ikke var det landet som tildelte Nobels Fredspris og som har bedre råd enn noen andre til å bære kostnadene av prinsippfastheten?

Norsk PEN mener at et Norge som tør å si ifra vil bety noe positivt i det lange løp, både for fredsprisen, næringslivet, internasjonalt fredsarbeid og forholdet til Kina – men først og fremst for ytringsfriheten og andre menneskerettigheter.

På denne bakgrunn vil styret i Norsk PEN på det sterkeste oppfordre den norske regjeringen til å møte Dalai Lama under hans norgesbesøk i mai.

 

24. april 2014

 

Nærmere informasjon:

Styreleder William Nygaard: 908 92 601

Generalsekretær Carl Morten Iversen: 926  88 023

2013 Kina-Tibet: Kunchok Tsephel Gopey Tsang

Norway, 15. November 2013

His Excellency Xi Jinping
President of the People’s Republic of China
State Council
Beijing 100032
P.R. China

CC. Tibet Autonomous Region Party
Secretary
Chen Quanguo
Tibet Autonomous Regional Office, No.1
Kang’angdonglu,
Lhasa,
Tibet 850000
People’s Republic of China

Chinese Embassy in Oslo, Norway
Tuengen Alle 2B, Vinderen 0244
Oslo, Norway
webmaster@chineseembassy.no

Your Excellencies,

I write to you as the chair of the Writers in Prison Committee of Norwegian PEN, the local section of PEN International, the writer`s and free expression organisation with 140 centres in over 100 countries around the world, including China and many other countries in your region.

Kunchok Tsephel Gopey Tsang is a Tibetan internet writer and cofounder/editor of the Tibetan language website Chomei (The Lamp) www.tibetcm.com, convicted of “disclosing state secrets” on 12 November 2009, currently serving a 15year prison sentence.

PEN is seeking information about the precise reasons for the imprisonment of Kunchok Tsephel Gopey Tsang, and calling for his immediate and unconditional release if he is held – as PEN International believes is very likely to be the case – solely for the peaceful
exercise of his right to freedom of expression.

PEN would like to remind Chinese authorities that Article 35 of the constitution of the People’s Republic of China provides for freedom of speech and that as a signatory to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which provides for freedom of legitimate
expression, the right not to be arbitrarily detained and the right to a fair trial, they are obliged to «refrain from acts that would defeat or undermine the treaty’s objective and purpose”.

PEN is also urging the Chinese authorities to ratify the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights without delay.

Yours sincerely,

Trine Kleven
Chair, Norwegian PENs Writers in Prison Committee

Anders Heger: We gave the Nobel price to Liu Xiaobo, not because we are against the Chinese, but because we are for the Chinese

Anders Heger: The critics of this years Nobel Peace Prize have missed an essential point.  There is something strangely arrogant in the notion that what´s real and accepted in other societies, is furthest from ourselves.  Liu Xiaobo represents Chinese culture in the same way as the publishers of Apollinaires represent Turkish culture: In the way that dissidents, always and forever, have been more important for the development of a society than anyone in power.  Authorities manifest what was and what has been.  Dissidents alert us about what is coming.»

Kina:

Kan et land ha økonomisk vekst og samtidig respektere menneskerettighetene?

 

Amnesty International og PEN International inviterer til

FROKOSTSEMINAR

10. desember
Tid: Kl 09.00 -11.00
Sted: Amnestys lokaler i Grensen 3.

Tema for seminaret er:

  • Liu Xiaobo og Charter 08
  • Ytringsfrihet
  • Økonomisk vekst versus respekt for menneskerettigheter i Kina

President i PEN International, John Ralston Saul og Salil Shetty, internasjonal generalsekretær i Amnesty International, vil delta sammen med flere menneskerettighetsforkjempere fra Kina.

Arrangementet er åpent for alle interesserte. Ingen påmelding er nødvendig. Vel møtt!

Voice of Tibet says China ‘jamming’ quake condolences

The Voice of Tibet (VOT) radio service slammed the Chinese authorities Thursday for jamming condolence messages from exiled Tibetans over the deadly earthquake in northwest China.

The Oslo-based VOT said it had been including messages of support, solidarity and grief since Monday with its shortwave transmissions — which are regularly jammed — in both Tibetan and Mandarin.

After all broadcasts were blocked for two days, VOT decided to isolate the condolences from its regular Tibetan news and current affairs and send them in a separate daily transmission.

«We informed the Chinese authorities of this and asked them to allow the transmissions, but again on Wednesday these special broadcasts were jammed,» said VOT’s editor-in-chief Karmna Yeshi, based in Dharamshala, the seat of the Tibetan government-in-exile in northern India.

«All we wanted was to give a platform for Tibetans and other sympathisers to convey their messages to the victims of the earthquake, rescue workers and aid agencies,» Yeshi said.  «Unfortunately, our appeal to allow this on humanitarian grounds was ignored by the Chinese,» he added.

Last week’s 6.9-magnitude quake, which killed nearly 2,200 people, hit a remote region of the Tibetan plateau in northwestern China.  The Dalai Lama, Tibet’s exiled spiritual leader, had appealed to the government in Beijing to let him into China for the first time in 51 years to visit the quake zone in the region of Qinghai, where he was born. So far, Beijing has declined to respond directly to the request.  The condolences transmitted by VOT included messages from the Dalai Lama, other senior lamas, Tibet support groups and individual Tibetan exiles.  VOT’s director in Oslo, Oystein Alme, said the Chinese jamming was a «grave violation» of basic human rights.

«There are on and off buttons also on Chinese radios. Why are the Chinese authorities so afraid they can not even allow the Tibetans to hear condolence messages from the outside world?» Alme said in a statement.
VOT has been airing daily programmes in both Tibetan and Chinese on short wave to Tibet and China as well as India, Bhutan and Nepal since 1996.