As the 11th Panchen Lama, Gedhun Choekyi Nyima, marks his 34th birthday anniversary, the Inter-Parliamentary Group for Tibet in the Spanish Senate has demanded that China provide proof of life and account for his whereabouts. In a statement, the group called on the Chinese authorities to allow the Panchen Lama to exercise his fundamental freedom in line with the PRC's international commitments and demanded his immediate release along with his family and all other Tibetan political prisoners.
Established and launched earlier this year at the initiative of Senator Robert Masih Nahar, the Inter-Parliamentary Group for Tibet in the Senate is one of Spain's first political activities. The group aims to raise awareness of the situation in Tibet and advocate for Tibetans' human rights, democracy, and freedom. Recently, the group elected Laura Castelfort as its President, who has been a staunch advocate of human rights in Tibet for years.
The Chinese authorities have been accused of abducting the Panchen Lama and his family in 1995, shortly after he was recognized by the Dalai Lama as the reincarnation of the 10th Panchen Lama. He has not been seen in public since, and his current whereabouts remain unknown. China's claim that he is leading a normal life and does not want to be disturbed has been widely discredited by human rights organizations and governments worldwide.
The Inter-Parliamentary Group's call for China to provide proof of life and release the Panchen Lama is just one of many such demands from human rights organizations and governments worldwide. The situation in Tibet remains a concern for the international community, with reports of human rights abuses, religious and cultural repression, and environmental degradation.
As the Inter-Parliamentary Group for Tibet in the Spanish Senate continues to raise awareness and advocate for Tibetans' rights, it is hoped that their efforts, along with those of other human rights organizations and governments worldwide, will eventually lead to the release of the Panchen Lama and a resolution to the ongoing situation in Tibet.
Edited and collated by Team TRC