Free Tashi Dhondup, Tibetan Singer

  • by:
  • recipient: Wu Aiying, Ministry of Justice & Qiang Wei, Party Secretary of Qinghai
Tashi Dhondup is a popular singer from the eastern Tibetan region of Amdo. He was arrested following the 2009 release of a CD containing songs which included lyrics calling for the Dalai Lama's return to Tibet and lamenting that "There is no freedom in Tibet."

Tashi Dhondup is currently serving a two-year term in a forced labor camp for his pro-Tibetan music.

In China, police have the option of avoiding the courts and may instead send cases to a "re-education through labor" committee. These committees are usually staffed by senior police officers and other Party and government officials, and have the authority to send defendants to labor camps for up to three years without any judicial oversight and without the defendant having any right to hire a lawyer.

All people have a human right to freedom of expression, and no one should be jailed or imprisoned without recourse to a fair trial. Tell the Chinese authorities to free Tashi Dhondup and to dismantle the "re-education through labor" committees.
Tashi Dhondup is currently serving a 15-month term in a "re-education through labor camp" for lyrics included in his "Torture Without Wounds" album. I urge you to set him free.

Tashi Dhondup is suffering for simply exercising his basic right to freedom of expression as recognized under Article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights to which China is a signatory.

In addition, he was sentenced to hard labor via a "re-education through labor" committee, without access to a lawyer or the courts. This is a violation of Article 14 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

All people have an innate human right to freedom of expression, and all people have a right to a fair, impartial trial.

I urge you to release Tashi Dhondup immediately and cease the use of the "re-education through labor" committees.
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