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Wreath-laying at Cenotaph for Tibet


On Tibetan Uprising Day this Tuesday, 10 March, grim memories will be evoked at a wreath-laying ceremony to mark the 50th anniversary of this imporant day in the Tibet calender.

Wreath laying at Cenotaph for Tibet

A wreath will be laid at the Cenotaph outside Parliament followed by a blessing chant by Tibetan Gyuto monks to mark 50 years since the Tibetan uprising in Lhasa. The wreath laying ceremony will take place on Tuesday, March 10, at 5.30pm.

The event, organised by Friends of Tibet (NZ), will begin with a 50 second silence (one second to mark each year). Green MP Keith Locke will speak at the event and a speech by His Holiness the Dalai Lama will also be read.

Friends of Tibet will also hold its annual March 10 rally outside the Chinese Embassy on Glenmore St from 7.30am to 9am.

“It is important that we let the Chinese government know we won’t forget Tibet even after 50 years,” Friends of Tibet (Wellington) chairperson Ellen Blake said.

China invaded Tibet in 1949/50; the Chinese response to the Uprising in 1959 resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands of Tibetans and led to the Dalai Lama escaping into exile, where he has remained ever since. Tibetans have peacefully resisted the Chinese regime for 50 years, despite a constant military occupation in Tibet and conditions similar to martial law.

In March 2008 another series of protests erupted throughout Tibet. The Chinese military responded with the same brutality. Hundreds were killed and thousands went missing.

In the run up to this year’s anniversary, despite a massive military presence in Tibet, severe restrictions and the threat of imprisonment and torture, at least five protests have already broken out in Tibet involving hundreds of people expressing their dissatisfaction with Chinese rule.

For more information contact Friends of Tibet (Wellington) chairperson Ellen Blake 021 106 7139 or


1. For a map and summary of most of the protests in 2009 go to

2. The Tibetan Government in Exile has reported that 219 Tibetans were killed and 1,294 were injured during protests in March 2008.

3. On 21 June 2008, China Daily reported that Chinese authorities had released 3,072 of the 4,434 persons detained between March 14 2008 and 9 April 2008. Analysis released by the American Congressional Executive Commission on China (CECC) shows that the whereabouts of at least 1,200 Tibetans remain unknown