Un geste fort pour libérer le Panchen Lama, symbole de la répression de Pékin au Tibet

En 1995, alors âgé de 6 ans, Gedhun Choekyi Nyima avait été déclaré comme la réincarnation du Panchen Lama par le Dalai lama. Il avait été aussitôt arrêté par les autorités et n’a pas été revu depuis. Pékin avait immédiatement désigné à la place son propre Panchen Lama, onzième du titre. Il n’a plus été vu ou entendu depuis 25 ans et il symbolise aux yeux des Tibétains la répression du régime communiste au Tibet. Ce 25 avril, il aura 31 ans.

Dans ce contexte, j’ai interpellé le Ministre des Affaires étrangères, Philippe Goffin, non seulement pour connaître la position de la Belgique sur cette disparition forcée en Chine, mais aussi pour savoir si notre pays compte envoyer un message fort à Pékin pour libérer le Panchen Lama.

En attendant les réponses du Ministre, voici le “public statement”…

Public statement

Tibet continues to be rated as the second least free country in the world, after Syria. Tibetans say that it is easier to go to heaven than to get a passport from Chinese government. Tibet has been under iron-fist control of China for over six decades. The repressive nature of the rule is best exemplified by the case of Panchen Lama. He has not been seen for quarter of a century.

He was recognised as the reincarnation of the 10th Panchen Lama on 14 May 1995 by His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Three days later, on 17 May, the Chinese government abducted him along with his parents. For 25 years he has not been seen or heard in public, although it is believed he is still alive. On the 25th of this month he will be 31 years old.

The plight of Gedun Choekyi Nyima is particularly heart wrenching one for Tibetans. This recurring human rights abuse needs to be addressed. China’s claim of him leading a healthy, normal life cannot be considered credible. Not when the world has not seen him actually alive. His enforced disappearance case was registered in 1995 with the UN Working Group on Enforced and Involuntary Disappearance. It is one of the oldest continuing cases of enforced disappearance in the world. And he is one of the world’s longest-serving political prisoners and the youngest one at that. 

As a Member of the Federal Parliament of Belgium and Vice-chair of the Foreign affairs Committee, I thereby express my strong support for the second highest figure in Tibetan Buddhism – Gedhun Choekyi Nyima.

To mark the 25th anniversary of his disappearance, this year, I have asked the Belgian Minister of Foreign affairs to send a strong message to Beijing to free him and his parents immediately without any conditions.