Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole paid tribute to the “brave women and men who sacrificed their lives for the just cause of Tibet” in a statement on the 62nd Tibetan National Uprising Day.
“This day commemorates the 1959 Tibetan uprising against the presence of Communist China in Tibet,” O’Toole said on March 10.
In March 1959, thousands of Tibetans took to the streets of Lhasa, Tibet’s capital, to revolt against the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) “illegal invasion and occupation of their homeland.” The Tibetans surrounded the Potala Place, home of the Dalai Lama, to protect him and eventually helped him to escape into exile. Many were killed by the Chinese military when they opened fire on them.
O’Toole said freedom of religion and belief are increasingly facing threats globally, therefore “Canada must stand behind those who advocate for religious freedom.”
“I take religious freedom very seriously,” he said. “We must stand up for those who are oppressed and facing human rights abuses.”
The Conservative Leader also criticized the CCP’s atrocities against other faith groups.
“Conservatives have urged China to stop the persecution of people who practice their religion or belief including Catholics, other Christians, Tibetans, Uyghurs, and Falun Dafa practitioners, including genocide of the Uyghur people.”
On March 8, independent think tank Newlines Institute for Strategy and Policy, published a report, concluding their findings that the CCP is responsible for the ongoing genocide against Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang.
Likewise, reports on the CCP’s alleged state-sanctioned force organ harvesting of Falun Gong prisoners of conscience in China continue mounting with new updates.
Human Rights Watch has also reported that the Chinese regime hasn’t ceased its imprisonment of Christians who attend underground churches to practice their faith.
O’Toole expressed his respect for the Tibetans for their “non-violent struggle for genuine autonomy, human rights, and justice for 62 years, without either malice or compromise,” saying it is “a great testament” of their belief and virtues.