SHANGHAI (Reuters) – China must build an “impregnable fortress” to maintain stability in Tibet, protect national unity and educate the masses in the struggle against “splittism”, President Xi Jinping told senior leaders, state media said on Saturday.
China seized control over Tibet in 1950 in what it describes as a “peaceful liberation” that helped the remote Himalayan region throw off its “feudalist” past. But critics, led by exiled spiritual leader the Dalai Lama, say Beijing’s rule amounts to “cultural genocide”.
At a senior Communist Party meeting on Tibet’s future governance, Xi lauded achievements made and praised frontline officials but said more efforts were needed to enrich, rejuvenate and strengthen unity in the region.
Political and ideological education needed to be strengthened in Tibet’s schools in order to “plant the seeds of loving China in the depths of the hearts of every youth”, Xi said in remarks published by state news agency Xinhua.
Pledging to build a “united, prosperous, civilised, harmonious and beautiful new, modern, socialist Tibet”, Xi said China needed to strengthen the role of the Communist Party in the territory and better integrate its ethnic groups.
Tibetan Buddhism also needed to adapt to socialism and to Chinese conditions, he added.
Is Tibet a country or part of China?
The Legal Status of Tibet. Recent events in Tibet have intensified the dispute over its legal status. The People’s Republic of China (PRC) claims that Tibet is an integral part of China. The Tibetan government-in-exile maintains that Tibet is an independent state under unlawful occupation.
The Legal Status of Tibet | Cultural Survival
When did Tibet become part of China?
In 1950, the newly established Communist regime in China invaded Tibet, which was rich in natural resources and had a strategically important border with India. Tibet today is under China’s occupation. The Chinese government justifies its occupation by claiming that Tibet has been part of China for around 800 years.
Is Tibet a country? | Free Tibet