The European Parliament (EP) will decide today at 16.00 hrs on a Resolution drafted by EPP Group Member Thomas Mann on the one language policy in Tibet. Members of all political groups in the EP (with exception of the GUE) submitted the Resolution. The text will therefore adopted by the plenary. "Over the last weeks, thousands of Tibetans have been peacefully protesting against plans to end the successful two language policy in Tibetan schools. The origin of these plans is the region of Qinghai where Tibetans live. High-level representatives of the Chinese Communist Party proclaimed that Mandarin Chinese should be the language of instruction as of 2015. There were also demonstrations in Brussels by Tibetan students who handed me a Resolution in front of the EP."
"Today, the EP is sending a clear signal to Beijing: China can never replace the Tibetan language! The EP will ask the European diplomatic representative in China to visit Tibet and to report on the language issue", Thomas Mann MEP, Chairman of the Tibet Intergroup in the EP, with more than 100 members, said.
"This time, the Tibetans are not the only ones concerned: even Cantonese and Shanghainese could be replaced by Mandarin in schools as well on radio. Hundreds of millions of people in South and East China, Hong Kong and Shanghai would be affected. There have been protests and Internet campaigns against the announcements by the regional authorities. The government itself admits that Mandarin is spoken by about half of all Chinese people", Mann underlined.
"Article 4 of China's Constitution and Article 10 of the Regional Autonomy law guarantee the freedom of all peoples to choose and develop their own language - spoken and written. Today, the EP will ask the Chinese Government to ensure that Tibetans can continue to exercise this right in the future", Thomas Mann concluded.