Tibetan documentary filmmaker faces trial in eastern Tibet for "inciting separatism."


Tibetan filmmaker Dhondup Wangchen, who directed and filmed the documentary "Leaving Fear Behind" (excerpt embedded above) has been charged with "inciting separatism" and is awaiting trial in Siling in eastern Tibet (Chinese: Xining, Qinghai Province). The Chinese government will not allow his lawyers to represent him, so there is not much hope for a fair trial.

Supporters are urging people to take action, by sending a letter to Wu Aiying, China's Minister of Justice and Zhang Yesui, China's Ambassador to the United Nations, demanding Dhondup Wangchen's immediate and unconditional release.

Dhondup Wangchen has been detained since March 2008 and has suffered torture and ill-treatement at the hands of the Chinese authorities. He is being targeted for simply exercising his right to freedom of expression, and the charges against him are part of the Chinese government's widespread campaign to punish and silence Tibetan voices of dissent.
(via Students for a Free Tibet)

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  1. Maybe not a positive response but i don’t think theres anything that WE here can do. They execute people over there for similar charges. The mans innocent but their government wants slaves not freemen walking their country. He will be made an example for all others who wish to think outside of government mandated thinking points. His internment wont change anyones minds really but they’ll be afraid to speak up which for the Chinese government always will be good enough, since its the best response they can hope for.

    Good luck telling the Chinese their wrong to jail him and get back to me when they’ve unconditionally released him. I don’t think I’ll hold my breath for this one.

  2. “He is being targeted for simply exercising his right to freedom of expression”

    Does he have a right to freedom of expression under the Chinese government? I’m honestly asking this, since I am not familiar with their laws.

  3. “Dhondup Wangchen has been detained since March 2008 and has suffered torture and ill-treatement at the hands of the Chinese authorities.”

    Are you seriously suggesting that we write to China and say they can’t incarcerate/torture people? Don’t we first have to … um … stop torturing people ourselves?

    Moral authority of Americans on torture = zero.

    1. Moral authority of Americans on torture = zero.

      Astroturfy use of Nirvana Fallacy = 100%.

  4. in America, objecting to use of torture by republicans results in being ignored while they are in power. In China, objecting to torture results in being tortured.

  5. Actually, yes, under China’s constitution he has the right to freedom of expression and under the Criminal Procedure Law of 1997 he also has the right to representation at trial (Art. IV). The limitation on these rights, as with *every* right supposedly enshrined in the Chinese constitution, is that the government can do literally anything it wants in the name of preserving the integrity and security of the country. In practice, this makes any rights Chinese people supposedly have meaningless, illusory. Not that the concept of “law” really means very much – trials almost have whatever outcome they’re supposed to have based on political expectations. They’re not proper trials at all, because their purpose is not to determine guilt or innocence – that’s preordained.

    Also unfortunate is that the constitution of the PRC builds Han supremacy, the nearly incoherent “one China” policy, and absolute national unity of the invented 56 ethnicities right in. It’s a fat load of nonsense, really.

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