Report: China sentences Tibetan filmmaker to 6 years for documentary on Tibetan refugees

Reports are circulating today that Tibetan filmmaker Dhondup Wangchen has been sentenced to six years in prison by the Chinese government for having produced "Leaving Fear Behind," a film about the plight of Tibetan refugees. An excerpt from that film, above. The Chinese government replaced Mr. Wangchen's attorney with a state-appointed lawyer earlier this year, a move condemned by Human Rights Watch as a "violation of China's criminal procedure law and its obligations under international human rights law, which guarantee criminal defendants the right to choose their own defense counsel and to meet with their counsel while in detention". Before he was removed from the case, Wangchen's attorney Li Dunyong said his client was tortured during interrogations, and sustained injuries that still caused him to suffer. Wangchen's wife, who lives in exile, say he has hepatitis and is that his basic medical needs are not being met in prison.

More:, Phayul. Background at RSF.

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


  1. Keep’em coming Xeni: this is the sort of atrocity that both the mainstream media and self-proclaimed “Progressives” routinely ignore in order to ride their own, insignificant hobby horses.

  2. When is the rest of the World going to WAKE UP and send a message to China? Not only should there be a political body of some sort to stop such behavior (no, not the Human Rights Council or the UN, who seems to really do nothing when it comes down to it)? This is maddening at best.

    If nothing else, seriously… can’t we all stop buying junk made in China and send a message that way? I realize people keep thinking and saying, “oh, that’s just how it is”, but if you think that way, go have fun in jail in China. We don’t need you.

    Sorry, I’m absolutely outraged that this sort of thing is tolerated in todays’ societies. We suck. WE ALL SUCK.

  3. But hey, the US nor most ‘Muricans won’t condone this, after all, most are addled on that cheap shit from Wal*mart coming here undermining the US economy, more-so all those stockholders and all those people getting rich outsourcing perfectly good products that were made in the US to save a few pennies for a consumer, lay off thousands of workers in the process, and make a handful of people all quite rich in the process. Pull up the veil people, this is what your consumer product choices get us, all from a country with no concern for human rights. There is a scary man behind the curtain, and it’s us.

  4. America is never going to ‘stand up’ to China – it’s indispensable yet awkward business partner for the new Millenium. The USA is already completely preoccupied in an entirely separate region of the globe for the purposes of acquiring fossil fuels.

    I don’t expect they’ll be issuing any stern threats to the PRC about human rights just to defend non-tangible values such as ‘freedom.’

  5. I can remember when almost everything in Walmart was made in America…little flag stickers everywhere.

    I wonder how Sam Walton would feel if he knew that his children were hugely responsible for the decline of his country?

  6. How is Walmart to blame for any of this? It doesn’t matter who sells the stuff, there isn’t any North American made stuff to sell. We don’t make anything any more since everyone decided that it was shameful to be a Maker and everyone wanted to work in an office: preferably a Hedge Fund office. If Walmart disappeared tomorrow we would still have moved all our manufacturing facilities to southern China. Walmart had nothing to do with pioneering that: it was the manufacturers themselves.

    The only differences between Walmart and almost all of the rest of the retailers here in Canada are ones in favour of Walmart: they don’t price gouge on the same local or foreign products; they contribute more to local charities; they pioneer green construction and building techniques; they have a way better record on supplier human rights issues; and so on almost endlessly. Only Honest Ed’s and the occasional Crappy Tire come close.

    Given their enlightened attitude towards copyrights (they’re against DRM and so on as it raises their costs) and minimum wage (they’d like a higher one please as they can afford it better than their competitors can) and several other things that I can’t trust my (now closed) government for I have high hopes that Walmart will solve an issue near and dear to my heart: Canadian price-gouging on generic drugs whereby almost all the price difference between brand and generics magically disappears between the manufacturer and the consumer.

    BTW – if you don’t want to buy Chinese made guy’s underwear your only viable choice is Stanfield’s – Buy Canadian! (I tried some Mexican ones once to try and escape covering my ass with Chinese made crap and regretted it ever since – painful!)

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