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HindustanTimes Thu,21 Aug 2014

World

Tibetan activist faces house arrest for getting invited to John Kerry dinner in Beijing
Sutirtho Patranobis, Hindustan Times
Beijing, July 09, 2014
First Published: 19:07 IST(9/7/2014)
Last Updated: 19:21 IST(9/7/2014)

A well-known Tibetan author and activist said Wednesday that she and her husband have been put under house arrested for being invited to a dinner where visiting US secretary of state, John Kerry was expected to be the chief guest.

According to Tsering Woeser, who posted the developments on Facebook and Twitter, security personnel arrived at her Beijing residence soon after she and her husband, Wang Lixiong, arrived home from Inner Mongolia.

According to her post in China, the personnel said neither of them could go out of the house for the next couple of days.

Tsering, who has been vocal about the rights for Tibetans and is under constant surveillance, said she believes that the detention was because of the dinner invitation she received from the US Embassy for Wednesday night.

“But I know, because the day before United States Embassy diplomats call my cell phone, invited to the Ambassador's residence this evening…, ” she wrote.

Woeser wrote that she was awarded the 2013 International Women of Courage Award by the U.S. State Department but Beijing banned her from traveling to Washington to receive it.

“The news says that US Secretary of State Kerry has come to Beijing. In March of last year, when the U.S. Department of State gave me the “International Woman of Courage Award”, I was unable to go to Washington to accept it because I was confined to my home and had no passport,” she wrote on her Facebook post.

According to the Associated Press (AP), at the award ceremony, Kerry had praised Tsering Woeser for “her courageous writings on Tibetan people and their causes at a time of deteriorating human rights”.

“Tsering Woeser has emerged as a clarion voice of the people, even as the Chinese government has worked to curtail the flow of information from Tibet,” AP quoted Kerry as saying at the time.


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