Tibetans respond to the hope of peace

By July 14, 2008

Tibet (MNN) — There is an
illusion of calm over Tibet. Anger over
China's ruthless crackdown in March still seethes.    

China has convicted 42 people for
their role in the March riots while another 116 await trial. Police detained
953 people, and recently the Chinese courts jailed 12 more rioters for their
roles in the unrest.

Olympic security has been the
cover story for the crackdown on internal dissent, particularly in Xinjiang
and in Tibet. Riots on March 14 sparked
anti-Chinese protests around the world. Chinese
officials say the riots were politically inspired, but they did not address the
underlying ethnic and economic grievances. 

The
trouble began on March 10 with peaceful protests in Lhasa to mark the
anniversary of a 1959 uprising against China's rule of Tibet. That quickly escalated into widespread
violence across the city four days later, which helped to rekindle
pro-independence sentiment.

As the Olympic Games in Beijing
near, the spotlight brings awareness of the plight of Tibet under Chinese
occupation. China's suppression of the
Tibetan culture has caused many to fear its loss.

Tibetans not only are looking for
ways to keep it alive, many are also looking for hope. Words
of Hope's
Lee DeYoung says, "The broadcast that Words of Hope is involved
in every night continues to broadcast hope and the good news of the Gospel of
Jesus Christ to the Tibetan people. The Chinese, in the past, have banned
Tibetan people from listening to foreign stations, but we do know, from a
number of testimonies, that people do listen quietly in private." 

The broadcasts themselves are not
political, but they do feature many things that keep the Tibetan listeners
encouraged. 

Called
the "Yeshu" program, the team is praying for fruit.
"There are over 20,000 responses that have come in the last year to
these broadcasts. We know that many Tibetan people, most of whom still are
Tibetan Buddhists, are interested in listening to these programs which
highlight, in a positive way, their culture and bring them hope."

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