|October 24, 2011|
As the Chinese authorities in the Uushin Banner of Ordos Municipality, Southern (Inner) Mongolia, are increasingly nervous about the death of Mr. Zorigt (another Mongolian herder killed by a Chinese fuel truck on October 20, 2011 when defending his grazing land), Mongolian netizens quickly rallied through social media to call for a large-scale protest similar to the ones sparked by the brutal killing of Mr. Mergen in early May.
A telephone communication received by the Southern Mongolian Human Rights Information Center (SMHRIC) reveals that out of fear of possible unrests, the Chinese authorities are reinforcing their information blockade policy to prevent any knowledge of Zorigt’s death from reaching the outside world. The communication confirmed that the family members of Zorigt were warned by local authorities not to reveal any details of the case to others, and all forms of gathering by the Mongolians are banned in the entire Uushin Banner.
Challenging the authorities’ tightening surveillance, a notice in both Mongolian and Chinese has been widely circulated on the Internet to call on the Mongolians to launch a demonstration. The following is an English translation of the notice by SMHRIC, along with its original Mongolian and Chinese versions:
Notice for Demonstration Calling for the Protection of Herders’ Rights
On October 20, the courageous herder Mr. Zorigt lost his precious life under the wheels of a heavy truck belonging to a Chinese company for defending his grazing land and his inalienable right as the owner of the land in Huhtolgoi Gachaa, Galuut Township, Uushin Banner of Ordos Municipality.
In order to obtain a satisfactory response from the Inner Mongolian authorities to fulfill their promises to protect herders’ rights and regulate the mining industries, this notice is issued to call for a region-wide demonstration in all Banners and Leagues as well as major cities, including Hohhot and Bogot, where Mongolians reside.
Gather at the squares in the townships and cities where you reside and march towards the government buildings.
From October 24 through 30, at 12:00 PM.
Mongolian students from all colleges, high schools, middle schools and elementary schools, as well as Mongolian herders, farmers and urban residents.
1. Try Zorigt’s case in a just and speedy manner, and punish the criminal(s) and the company backing him.
2. Hold an official funeral for both Zorigt and Mergen, and erect memorials for them at the Chinggis Khan Square at the regional capital, Hohhot.
3. Pass legislation to guarantee the effective protection of grasslands and herders’ legal rights, and enforce it strictly.
4. Respect Mongolian language, culture and tradition, return the displaced herders back to their homes, and rebuild the Mongolians’ schools that were removed.
Slogans and banners:
“Justice for Zorigt”
“Punish the Criminals”
“Defend Herders’ Rights”
“Defend Our Homeland”
Internet, cell phone, QQ, Skype and other social media.
You, me, us and all Mongolians.