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China Set To Be Furious As Canadian Parliament Passes Motion Recognising Tibetan Claim To Self-Determination

Kuldeep Negi

Jun 13, 2024, 10:02 AM | Updated 10:01 AM IST

The Dalai Lama. (File Photo) (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
The Dalai Lama. (File Photo) (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

In a landmark move, Canada’s House of Commons has unanimously passed a motion recognising the Tibetan claim to self-determination.

The motion, introduced by Alexis Brunelle-Duceppe, an MP from the Bloc Québécois, was passed on Monday with full support from all MPs present.

Notably, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was absent from the chamber during the vote.

Julie Vignola, another Bloc MP, highlighted the significance of the motion, stating on X, "The motion adopted today represents more than a year of discussions and negotiations."

The Canada Tibet Committee (CTC) expressed their elation on the development on X.

"Thrilled to announce that the Parliament of Canada has passed a unanimous motion declaring Tibet’s right to self-determination," the CTC wrote.

The motion’s text asserts that China is engaging in systemic cultural assimilation against Tibetans and acknowledges that "Tibetans, as a people and a nation, can claim the right to self-determination."

It further declares that Tibetans should have the autonomy to choose their economic, social, cultural, and religious policies without external interference.

This includes prohibiting China from meddling in the selection of the next Tibetan spiritual leader, the successor to the 14th Dalai Lama.

The development is expected to irk China which claims Tibet as its territory.

Sherap Therchin, executive director of the CTC, hailed the motion as a "historic milestone."

He noted that it bolsters the Tibetan cause against Beijing’s narrative that Tibet has been part of China since its annexation in 1950.

"This is not a legally binding motion, but it stays in the government record. It is a huge step, going beyond the usual human rights angle. Hopefully, this will encourage the government to take further steps," Therchin added.

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Kuldeep is Senior Editor (Newsroom) at Swarajya. He tweets at @kaydnegi.

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