Good morning, ladies and gentlemen,
My name is Enghebatu Togochog, and I represent the Southern Mongolian Human Rights Information Center.
It is my great honor and privilege to have this opportunity to talk about the human rights conditions of Mongolian people in China.
As all of us know, the Government of China celebrated its 60 years of Communist rule just few days ago with a spectacular parade of tanks, fighter jets, fleets, fireworks and more, displaying its oppressive power that has been used without any hesitation against the Mongols, Tibetans, Uyghurs and its own people.
The past 60 years has seen millions of Southern Mongolians, Tibetans, Uyghurs and Chinese continue their tireless struggle for freedom, human rights, and well-being of their peoples, risking their lives. Yet, the Government of China has not progressed in regard to respecting its citizens’ human rights and human dignity. Instead it continues to suppress its citizens and persecute those who express their aspirations for freedom and democracy. Thousands of Mongols, Tibetans and Uyghurs who have struggled to promote and protect their rights to their distinct culture, religious beliefs, and self-determination have been arrested, detained and tortured.
For Southern Mongolians, the past 60 years has been filled with political suppression, cultural assimilation, economic exploitation and ecological destruction. Mr. Hada who demanded meaningful autonomy for Southern Mongolia was sentenced to a 15 year jail term, suffering from grave physical and mental conditions; Mr. Naguunbilig and his wife Ms. Daguulaa were sent to jail for 10 years and 5 years respectively for practicing an “evil cult” although they were doing no more than practicing traditional Mongolian medicine; Mr. Naranbilig was put under 1 year house arrest for defending the rights of Mongolian herders who have been forcibly displaced from their ancestral lands to agricultural and urban areas; just a few months ago, 3 young Mongolian men were arrested and detained for attempting to organize a public protest in Southern Mongolia; hundreds of dissidents and their family members have been closely monitored by the authorities for ‘possible harm to the “national interest and state security” of China’; thousands of Mongolian herders have been beaten up, arrested, detained and fined for resisting the Government policies of “ecological migration” and “total ban over livestock grazing”; hundreds of Mongolian language publications have been banned for containing “nationality sentiments” and dozens of internet sites have been shutdown for “publishing separatist articles” and “providing platforms for separatists”.
Dear friends, the Chinese Government is an authoritarian regime where all forms of political dissent, cultural diversity and religious belief are regarded as a threat that might undermine the regime. A future China must be a free, open and democratic society that respects human rights and human dignity, regards dissent as a virtue, and embraces diversity as beauty. It is our responsibility to work together to make China a nation where all the citizens of China will live without fear and the Mongols, Tibetans, Uyghurs and other nationalities will fully enjoy the right to determine their own political future.
Southern Mongolian Human Rights Information Center