Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Tibet Riots Raises Concern in China

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March 23- Authorities closed down Tibet's capital and sent in additional troops for rigid control after a violent uprise occurred from an Anti-Chinese protest group.

On Monday morning, the Tibetan exile group also known as the Buddhist Monks, launched deadly riots against Chinese rule. The Chinese government accused the exiled spiritual leader, Dalai Lama, for plotting these violent riots. Allegedly, Dalai has been identified as the current leader and supporter of 3 decades of combative persuasion in gaining Tibet's independence.
As the anti-Chinese movement continues to spread, protest groups are actively burning down government offices, cars, shops, hotels, schools, and homes. According to CNN news, Foreign Ministry spokesman, Qin Gang, he has demanded that foreign tourists must restrict their travels and to ut of westerremain in Gansu and Sichuan provinces. Many tourists that were banned from the capital, described the area to be very hostile because of the constant gun shots. 30 were reported killed and 325 were injured that day. On Wednesday, local police arrested 24 protestors in Xiahe.

The following day, Chinese authorities immediately closed down the city. The main streets are empty and reinforced with military and law enforcement officials. Streets are completely occupied with military blockades which are used to keep Tibetans in and reporters out of the area. Even at airports, Tibetan police turned away foreigners at the check-in counters.

These riots have no doubt caused critics to judge the state of China's affairs and the human rights issues surrounding the Bejing Olympics. The Olympics are scheduled to kickoff in two weeks. There have been rumors that possible boycotts may occur during the opening ceremony. To add insult to injury, the Chinese government is already being scrutinized for their involvement in the Darfur Movement.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

International Women's Day: Do We Value Black Women Less on the African Contient?

Congolese Women Appeal to the Global Community

The Congo is located in the heart of Africa, bordered by nine countries and boasts a land mass comparable to Western Europe, with a population of 65 million people. It is enormously endowed with vast natural wealth ranging from diamonds, gold, copper, cobalt, uranium, coltan to timber, tin and fresh water.

Congo is also the place of the deadliest conflict since World Ward II, which has claimed at least 5.4 million lives in the past decade, half of the dead, children 5 years old and younger. Approximately, 45,000 Congolese continue to die each month. The overwhelming majority of the deaths have been a result of treatable causes such as malaria, diarrhea, pneumonia and malnutrition.

One of the most shocking results of the conflict is the rape of hundreds of thousands of Congolese women and children. Children as young as 3 years old and women as old as 70, have been raped and sexually mutilated.

Two types of rapes are occurring in the Congo; the rape of the women and the children and the rape of the land. The two are inextricably linked as the scramble to control Congo’s natural wealth fuels the violence and mass rape.

As a global community of conscience, which stands for human dignity and the belief that it is the responsibility of each of us to protect the vulnerable among us; in this respect, we call for the following:
  • Stop the Rapes in the Congo
  • Stand in Solidarity with the women and children of the Congo
  • Cease the Pillaging of Congo’s mineral wealth
  • Appeal for Justice for the Congolese people
  • Prevent intervention by Congo's neighbor countries
  • Break the Silence in the corporate media about the source of the Congo conflict
  • Protect the vulnerable populations in the Congo
  • Acknowledge the Congo crisis as a world crisis
  • Restore and Repair the lives of the women and children
  • Join in Solidarity with women and children who are victims of war throughout the globe
As long as black bodies are devalued anywhere in the world, they will be devalued everywhere in the world.

Find out more about women in the Congo and their remarkable battle for human dignity.

Maurice Carney
Executive Director
Friends of the Congo