Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs Steve Goldstein recently marked the Tibetan New Year by recognizing the many contributions of Tibetans globally as well as Tibetan-Americans in the United States. At the same time, he noted that “Tibetans face great challenges in other parts of the world, especially on the Tibetan plateau.” Under Secretary Goldstein reiterated U.S. support for “the aspirations of the Tibetan people to safeguard their distinct identity.”
One way the U.S. has supported the Tibetan people is through the Tibetan Scholarship Program, which has made possible the exchange of over 400 Tibetans from communities in India and Nepal. Participants pursue graduate-level education at U.S. colleges and universities in disciplines that address pressing needs within Tibetan communities.
Indeed, the U.S. will celebrate in April the Tibetan Scholarship Program’s 30 years of academic exchanges with an alumni event in Dharamsala, India. Through presentations and photo exhibits, program alumni will share how they have applied the knowledge, values, and relationships they gained while in America to positively impact their communities back home.
The United States is committed to promoting sustainable development and environmental conservation in Tibetan communities, and to supporting humanitarian assistance to Tibetan refugees in India and Nepal.
The United States remains committed to improving respect for the human rights of Tibetans, including their freedom of religion. “It is important that Tibetans be able to practice freely their faith and select their religious leaders in keeping with their own customs and traditions, without interference,” stressed Under Secretary Goldstein.
“Finally, and most importantly,” said Under Secretary Goldstein, “we recognize that the Tibetan people must have a voice in their own future.”