FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 24 April 2020
SFT TAKES URGENT ACTION TO ADVOCATE FOR HIS IMMEDIATE RELEASE
A-Nya Sengdra is a Tibetan nomad, human rights defender, and climate activist who was working on anti-corruption and environment issues in Chinese-occupied Tibet. In a sham trial, A-Nya Sengdra was found guilty on December 6th, 2019 by a court in Golog Prefecture, Amdo eastern Tibet. His crime was “gathering people to disturb public order” and “picking quarrels and provoking trouble” — both vague charges China often brings against human rights defenders.
A-Nya’s lawyer appealed this decision. On 21 April, 2020, the appeal was granted with a court date of 26 April, 2020. A-Nya faces up to 10 years in prison for the simple “crime” of fighting for the Tibetan environment. But it is not too late to take action for A-Nya.
Students for a Free Tibet submitted a letter to the U.S. Consulate General in Chengdu imploring them to take action for A-Nya. We asked for two specific actions:
- Send representation from the US Consulate General in Chengdu (or Beijing) to request access to A-Nya’s trial.
- Make a request for information about A-Nya Sengdra’s case and urge for his immediate release on grounds that his arrest and detention are politically motivated and directly connected to his political and human rights activism.
In prior cases, representation from embassies at the trials of Tibetan human rights defenders has made a difference to the outcome of the case. SFT firmly believes that embassies and consulates based in China can encourage greater transparency in A-Nya’s case, and possibly lead to a more positive outcome. SFT and partner organizations have written directly to governments around the world, urging them to monitor A-Nya’s case and call for his immediate release in their communication with Beijing.
In addition to Capital and embassy-level advocacy, SFT has appealed to the international climate movement to seek solidarity. As the role of frontline communities in the fight against climate change is increasingly acknowledged, A-Nya’s trial is a pivotal opportunity for climate activists around the world to honor Earth Week by standing in solidarity with frontline climate activists.
Therefore, working with human rights and climate activists from a variety of movements, SFT created a video to raise awareness about A-Nya’s current predicament. In just a few short days, this video has already garnered thousands of views across our social media platforms.