By Clarence Leong Attention on the 18th Party Congress of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), which started on 8th November, has focused on issues such as the new generation of leaders, appraisal of Hu and Wen’s 10 years in office, and the form of much needed political reform. Yet, in a repressed society like China, occasions such as these offer a window of opportunity for activists to heighten their campaigns. A staggering nine Tibetans chose to end their lives by self-immolation in the six days since the start of 18th Congress, crying for a free Tibet and the return of the Dalai Lama in their last moments. But were these desperate cries heard?

The Dalai Lama met with Japanese politicians on Tuesday to urge them to visit Tibet, and pressed China to probe the wave of self-immolations, which amounted to 69 cases since 2011. The last time that a large-scale…

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