One of the world’s longest serving political prisoners will again visit Minnesota on Sun., Aug. 21, 2011 at 4 p.m. at the Tibetan Community Hall, 1096 Raymond Ave, Saint Paul, MN 55108. The Venerable Palden Gyatso is an 80 year old Tibetan monk and former Amnesty International Prisoner of Conscience. He is one of the world’s longest serving political prisoners after surviving 33 years of confinement in the Chinese gulag where he was constantly exposed to various forms of indoctrination and torture.
Gyatso will lead local Tibetans to mourn and pray for a monk who self-immolated in Tibet this week. On August 15, Tsewang Norbu, a 29 year old monk from Nyitso monastery in Kham, Tibet, died after self-immolation to protest Chinese rule in Tibet. He was shouting slogans supporting Tibet’s Freedom and calling for the return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to Tibet.
The prayer will be lead by the Gyuto monastery monks and Ven Palden Gyatso. The evening includes a screening of the internationally acclaimed award-winning documentary, based on Gyatso’s autobiography “Fire Under the Snow”, directed by Makoto Sasa. Gyatso will answer questions following the screening.
Throughout his imprisonment, Gyatso’s resistance to the repression served as an inspiration to freedom lovers all over the world. His testimony is part of a larger history of human rights violations that continue to occur in Tibet today.
Since his escape from Tibet to India in 1992, Palden has devoted his entire life to exposing the human rights atrocities of communist China. In 1995, he gave evidence at the United Nations Commission on Human Rights in Geneva. He also testified before the United Nations, the Oslo Human Rights Forum and the U.S. Congress. In 1998, he was awarded the John Humphrey Freedom Award.
This event is organized by the Regional Tibetan Youth Congress of Minnesota. A local chapter of the largest Tibetan NGO in the world. For information contact Jigme Ugen, president, Regional Tibetan Youth Congress of Minnesota at 612-812-5846.