What is the dispute between China Tibet

The China-Tibet conflict

History of the China-Tibet conflict
The conflict between Tibet and China is, very simply, that China wants Tibet to become a province of the Chinese Empire. However, Tibet wants to exist as an autonomous state and not be oppressed by China. However, because of the overwhelming strength of the Chinese army, resistance was pointless and pointless. In the course of time there have been repeated attempts by Tibet to become an independent state again. However, most of the uprisings were unsuccessful or the successes were not long-lasting.

Tibet is now under Chinese administration, but Tibet has not yet given up its quest for a state of its own. There are constant negotiations between China and the former Tibetan head, the Dalai Lama (spiritual and secular head of Tibet) and other representatives of Tibet. However, measures taken by China, such as the mixture of peoples (Chinese are settled in Tibet and Tibetans are settled in China), have put Tibet's chances of establishing its own state (or its independence) in the distant future. (There are now more Chinese (7,000,000) in Tibet than Tibetans (6,000,000).

The conflict between Tibet and China has its origins as early as the 7th century. Around 700 AD, a strong king in Tibet brought together the individual principalities into which it was divided and established the Kingdom of Tibet. The kingdom had a strong army with which Tibet quickly expanded its kingdom and controlled important trade routes. The Tibetan army was feared, as was the Chinese. Around AD 760, the Tibetans invaded the Chinese Empire, conquered the Chinese capital and sacked the then Chinese Empire. There were repeated military conflicts between Tibet and China for the next 200 years. However, this situation ended abruptly when around 900 AD Tibet again disintegrated into its rival principalities due to religious disputes. It took another 200 years for Tibet to reunite under a religious and secular head (Dalai Lama) and a new religion. But Tibet had changed, it was no longer a land of fierce warriors, but a land of peaceful religious people.

China wanted Tibet as a friendly state in their fight against the Mongols, who were also in Tibet. In 1720 they liberated Tibet from the Mongols, but left the government of Tibet and its people alone.
By 1900 Russia and Great Britain discovered Tibet as a well-located country for their own military advantage. Therefore, in 1904, GB secured Tibet, occupied it, and set up a government. With that the almost independent Tibet got back into the situation of the "people without a country". The UK acted quickly, fearing that sooner or later Russia would have done the same. With that, Tibet was first in the hands of the UK. In 1906 the British withdrew their soldiers from Tibet after China and the UK reached an agreement in which China paid the UK high compensation for the withdrawal. The UK and Russia agreed with China that neither the UK nor Russia would interfere further in Tibetan affairs. Through this agreement, Tibet China was served on a silver platter. China invaded Tibet in 1910 and overthrew the government and began integrating Tibet into China. This practice led to violent clashes with the Tibetans. With the Chinese taking control of Tibet, a revolution broke out in Tibet. With the help of the revolution, the Chinese government was overthrown two years later (1912) and China was driven out of Tibet again.

After the revolution, Tibet was again an independent state. However, China did not give up Tibet and wanted it back, which led to the war between China and Tibet in 1918. Despite attempts by the UK to broker a ceasefire between China and Tibet, no long-term pauses in the fighting or even peace could be achieved. The fighting over Tibet continued until in 1950, under communist leadership, China overran Tibet with a superior military force. Tibet capitulated after a year because it was senseless bloodshed for them. China had learned something new and also intervened in the government of Tibet. So the Dalai Lama only had the power to govern the internal affairs of Tibet. China represented Tibet completely externally (foreign, military policy). Tibet was forced to a 17-point agreement, in which the incorporation of Tibet into the People's Republic of China was the main point, whereby Tibet still had several rights, such as the free practice of religion. 1952-1956 it was quite quiet in Tibet. The Chinese provided development aid in Tibet, which calmed the heated mood. The Tibetans were restricted in only a few activities. The Dalai Lama had the opportunity to assert himself as Vice President of the Chinese legislature, which he did.

However, by the end of 1956, the quiet was over again. The Chinese began to exploit the Tibetans again. Forced labor and communist ideas among the militarily disciplined people led to revolts among the Tibetans again. In 1959 a rebellion was bloodily suppressed, and 87,000 Tibetans died in this rebellion alone. The UN condemned this action by the Chinese and said it was a suppression of human rights. The Dalai Lama fled Tibet to India, where he and other Tibetans founded a government in exile. In the years that followed, there were repeated unrest in Tibet, which the Chinese repeatedly resolved. In 1965, Tibet was officially granted the status of an Autonomous Region of the People's Republic of China. From the mid-1970s onwards, China admitted that it had made mistakes in Tibet and asked the Dalai Lama to return. But only on the condition that the Dalai Lama had to give up the fight for a state of his own. However, the Dalai Lama still refuses to return to this day. China eased many restrictions on Tibetans in 1980, which made Tibet quiet for a while. But the Tibetans began again in 1987 with demonstrations for a secession of Tibet from China. The demonstrations ended bloody again and China tightened restrictions and controls on Tibet again. Negotiations between the Dalai Lama and China have been taking place again since 1993, but with very poor prospects for Tibet after its own state. Since 1996, Tibetans have even been banned from showing a picture of the Dalai Lama at meetings.

So far more than 1 million Tibetans have fallen victim to the struggle for freedom and there is still no end to the conflict within reach.

Human rights situation in Tibet
Tibet covers an area of ​​2.5 million square kilometers. Tibet consists of 3 provinces: Amdo, Kham and U-Tsang. Amdo and Kham are annexed by China, so that the Tibetans only have U-Tsang to live, the so-called Tibet Autonomous Region. This region, created by China in 1965, comprises less than half of Tibet. The root cause of human rights abuses in Tibet is political. It is the result of the Chinese communist invasion and occupation of Tibet that began in 1949. The problem cannot be resolved until comprehensive negotiations take place between the leaders of China and Tibet. The Dalai Lama was ready to negotiate, but China's leaders refused.

After a series of demonstrations for the independence of Tibet, the Chinese government adopted a "policy of merciless suppression of all insurgents" in 1987 and in 1989 declared martial law. This policy has since been reinforced and is mainly directed against Tibetans who are demanding Tibet's independence. There are hundreds of political prisoners, most of them Buddhist monks and nuns. They are detained without charge or sentenced to long sentences after "trials". This also applies to minors. Torture is widespread. Reasons for the growing dissatisfaction of the Tibetans are likely to be the massive resettlement of Han Chinese and the suppression of religion. Most of the incarcerated Tibetans are arrested or imprisoned for disseminating "counter-revolutionary" material; everything that threatens the "unity" of China is widely interpreted as such. Activities such as "printing leaflets, forming subversive organizations, spying or passing on information to the enemy, criticizing the party in conversations with foreigners, inciting reactionary songs, hoisting the Tibetan flag and demonstrating" are all facts that lead to arrest. Participation in protests almost always leads to immediate arrest. These political arrests contradict the fundamental right to freedom of speech and violate Articles 9, 10, 18, 19 and 20 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. China makes special efforts to suppress the practice of religion. The Chinese occupation forces persecute Buddhist monks and nuns because they hold a different worldview. In the repressive regime, forced re-education and indoctrination sessions specifically aimed at these believers are aimed at converting their Tibetan national or religious beliefs into communist, China-friendly thinking. Those who do not conform will be expelled from their monastery and may not enter other monasteries. China used violence against Tibetans from the very beginning of the arrest procedure. Female prisoners are first completely stripped and searched and then brutally interrogated. During interrogation, they may be mistreated with sticks, electric cattle prods, or attacked by dogs. This ordeal will continue until the Tibetan women admit their participation in a demonstration and reveal the names of other organizers and sympathizers. They are forced to deny Tibetan independence and explain their patriotic feelings for China. It is even more agonizing for them when they are forced to renounce their spiritual teachers, especially the Dalai Lama.

The Dalai Lama's Peace Plan - Possible Solutions to the Conflict
Whether China will ever give up the occupation of Tibet is more than questionable. There are several reasons for that. On the one hand, due to the Chinese settlement policy, there will soon be more Chinese than Tibetans living in Tibet, which makes liberation almost impossible. In addition, the Chinese government does not want to "capitulate" to the rest of the world and give up the occupation. Another factor is Tibet's raw materials, which also play a certain role for the Chinese. Although the occupation of the country is illegal under international law and Tibet is still an independent state, a peaceful solution to the conflict can only be achieved through negotiations between Tibetans and the People's Republic of China. As a first step towards a permanent solution, the spiritual leader of Tibet, the Dalai Lama, presented a peace plan in 1987 that comprises five basic elements. It was hoped that the Chinese government would react to this and that friendly cooperation with the VR would be possible in the future. However, China completely ignored the peace plan and classified it in the category of "activities to divide the motherland".

The Dalai Lama's plan consisted of five main components:

  1. Conversion of the entire area of ​​Tibet into a peace zone
  2. Ending the resettlement of Chinese to Tibet, which otherwise threatens the existence of the Tibetans as an independent people
  3. Respect for the fundamental rights of the Tibetan people
  4. Restoring and protecting Tibet's natural environment and ending Chinese exploitation for nuclear weapon manufacture and radioactive waste storage
  5. Start of serious negotiations on the future status of Tibet

A year later, on June 5, 1988, the Dalai Lama made even more precise statements in his Strasbourg proposals with regard to the fifth point of his peace plan. For the first time he renounced the independence of Tibet and only demanded real autonomy within the Chinese state association. Nevertheless, the Chinese government has not yet responded positively to the Dalai Lama's offer to negotiate. The oppression and exploitation of the Tibetans is even increasing. Many therefore believe that only international pressure can influence and improve the situation. China is dependent on economic cooperation with the other states and great powers of the world and therefore it is possible that the demands of the western states will be more heeded than the protests of the Tibetan people or the Dalai Lama. Ultimately, however, a solution to the conflict depends solely on the People's Republic of China, which is why serious negotiations with the Chinese government must first be reached.

A relatively recent quote from the Dalai Lama on this:

“With regard to an acceptable solution to the Tibet issue, my position is very simple: I do not demand independence. As I have said many times, I just want the Tibetan people to have the opportunity to real self-determination in order to preserve their civilization and to cultivate and develop the unique Tibetan culture, religion, language and way of life. My main concern is to ensure the survival of the Tibetan people, along with their unique Buddhist cultural heritage. "

As a result of the cruel treatment of the Tibetans and their environment, initiatives were launched in all parts of the world, including the “Tibet Initiative Deutschland e.V.”. This exclusively non-profit, non-party and religiously independent organization was founded in 1989. Its members try to influence the situation in Tibet by peaceful means by distributing information and establishing contact with politics and business. You are in contact with the official representation of the Dalai Lama and with the government of Tibet in exile. In addition, the initiative regularly organizes lectures, discussions, film screenings, art exhibitions, as well as demonstrations and vigils to give people as much knowledge as possible about Tibet and to get them to do something. Talks with politicians and other important personalities also take place on a regular basis.


  • www.tibet-initiative.de
  • http://www.tibetfocus.com/dalailama/vision2000.htm
  • http://www.tibet.ca/wtnarchive/1998/5/6_1.html
  • http://www.krisen-und-konfligte.de/tibet/AUSBLICK.HTM


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