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Tibetans Applaud Relocation of Nobel Peace Summit to Rome After Being Scrapped over Dalai Lama Visa Row

posted Nov 20, 2014, 4:45 PM by The Tibetan Political Review

By Tibetan National Congress

Relocation comes after Nobel Laureates boycott Cape Town summit due to South Africa’s denial of visa to the Dalai Lama. Tibetan National Congress continued campaigning for relocation to Rome for a month.


The 14th World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates was scheduled to convene in Cape Town, South Africa in October 2014, but was later cancelled following several Nobel Peace laureates pulling out of the event after the South African government succumbed to pressure from China to deny a visa to His Holiness the Dalai Lama. 

The Summit will be now moved to Rome from December 12 to 14, 2014where it was first hosted and then seven times after; Rome where the Secretariat's office is based. The Permanent Secretariat of Nobel Peace laureates summit is yet to make a formal announcement. But a formal invitation to His Holiness the Dalai Lama, who is an honorary citizen of Rome, has been accepted. 

The Tibetan National Congress (TNC), an independent Tibetan political party, extended its deepest gratitude to the laureates and Summit secretariat. "This is a major victory for justice and for peace,” TNC President Jigme Ugen stated. "We thank these esteemed Nobel laureates and the secretariat for standing on the side of justice. This relocation allows His Holiness the Dalai Lama to attend, and allows the Summit to avoid the irreparable taint of accepting censorship by the Chinese government, the only regime in the world currently imprisoning a Nobel Peace Laureate."

Tomorrow, TNC-Europe board members will be visiting the offices of the Permanent Secretariat and the Mayor of Rome to thank them and offer traditional Tibetan khataks.

TNC also thanked the over 10,000 people who signed its petition launched in early September, respectfully urging the Nobel laureates to boycott the Summit and relocate to a venue where a government will not censor which voices get heard. Signatories supporting this call to "boycott or relocate" included prominent political leaders from six countries, dissidents, lawyers, and musicians and artists from across the world.

On September 24, the executive director of the F.W. de Klerk Foundation, one of the Summit organizers in South Africa, contacted TNC to say that TNC's campaign "may lead to the cancellation of the Summit." TNC expressed its firm belief that the relocation of the Summit would demonstrate that Beijing and its allies cannot dictate the terms of a Nobel meeting. In a press release distributed globally by PR Newswire on October 2nd, TNC suggested Rome as an alternate venue for the Summit, and has been campaigning for the relocation to that city for the past month.

“The relocation of the Summit to Rome is a testament to the strength of the universal ideals of freedom for which His Holiness the Dalai Lama stands, and of the power of collective action to successfully resist the bullying tactics of the Chinese government," added Ugen. “Additionally, we strongly support holding a future Summit in Cape Town, once the South African government puts the interests of its own people before the interests of the Beijing regime," said Ugen.


Media Contact:

Europe: Tenam – 011 33 6 33 69 90 99

USA: Jigme Ugen – 612 812 5846


The TNC is a political freedom movement established as a democratic, non-sectarian, non-regional, pan Tibetan movement that seeks to pursue the ultimate goal of restoring a sovereign and independent Tibetan nation state.

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