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Tibet and China have been tweeting each other


There has been a great deal of chatter on the Internet about the situation in Tibet. Tibet sends tweets to China and China tweets back reported on May 3, 2014. Paradoxically as Tibetans share stories of hard lives under repressive Chinese rule, the Chinese Communist Party has at times declared that the capital of Tibet, Lhasa, is the happiest city in China.

Tensions between the exiled Dalai Lama and China have persisted for decades. Successive Communist Chinese party officials have called His Holiness the Dalai Lama a "wolf in monk's robes" or "a devil with a human face, but with a heart of a beast." Yet, Tibetans continue to respect the Dalai Lama deeply as their spiritual leader and many protesting self-immolators over the years have demanded his return to Tibet. Overall it appears the vast majority of the Chinese do not question the Communist party's views of the Dalai Lama, nor the conditions which prevail on the plateau.

The Central Tibetan Administration has also reported that Tibet tweets to China and China tweets back regarding views on the situation in Tibet. A report which has been issued by the International Campaign for Tibet (ICT), which is an advocacy group based in Washington, D.C., says despite authorities efforts to crack down on social media ICT has been able to collect hundreds of images which document the harsh security measures implemented in Tibet by Chinese authorities.

In the ICT report there is a survey of Internet chatter by Chinese tourists to Tibet from 2011 to 2012. There are images included which depict a highly militarized Tibet and the Chinese tourists' expressions of shock and even fear at China's extreme military power which is on display in Tibet. A Sina Weibo, Chinese version of Twitter, posting of 2011, quoted in the report, has likened the situation in eastern Tibet to "a war zone."

It appears the Chinese Communist Party wants to silence the voice of the Dalai Lama in Tibet. As the Internet chatter continues to make the harsh realities of Tibet clearer the Tibetans must be careful about how they share their views on this highly sensitive matter in order to avoid being arrested by the Chinese authorities.