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Source: gangkyi.com,16 May,2008
Dharamsala, 22 May, 2008: Lobsang Wangyal Productions, an event management company based in Dharamsala and founded by Lobsang Wangyal, organized a press conference this morning, announcing the launch of Tibetan Olympics in Dharamsala in the month of May, 2008.
During the conference, attended by both the Tibetan and non-Tibetan media groups, Mr. Lobsang Wangyal issued a press statement outlining the number of participants in the Tibetan Olympics, prize money for the winning and participating athletes, and the fact that the Tibetan version of Olympic torch travelled to more than twelve countries throughout the world.
Mr. Wangyal denied that the Tibetan version of Olympics is aimed at criticizing and politicizes the Beijing Olympics to be held in August 2008.
He said, "It [Tibetan Olympics] is an initiative to let Tibetans join in the celebration of the spirit of the biggest international sports event".
He even admitted that China, being one of the oldest civilizations and having the largest population in the world, fully deserves to host the Olympics.
"We feel that the Beijing Olympics is an event for and of the people of China. Students, artistes, business and sports people and the public in general will make it happen, not the government of China", he said.
Mr. Wangyal, however, criticized and opposed Chinese government's misguided and oppressive policies both inside China and Tibet.
"Their [the Chinese government's] polices are dividing and suppressing people, and destroying the environment, throughout China. What has happened in Tibet in the recent past must be understood and addressed in a mutually beneficial way so that there can be peace, stability and progress in China".
In a veiled criticism of China's decision to carry the torch to the Tibetan plateau, Mr. Wangyal said that the torch of Tibetan Olympics symbolizes love and joy rather than "misery".
When asked as to why not many Tibetan girls have participated in the event, Mr. Wangyal said that most of them were shy to openly participate in such events under huge media spotlight.
"We did not get as many applications from young Tibetan women as we wished and expected. When we tried to encourage them to take part, many of them said they
were feeling shy to participate", he said.
The Tibetan Olympics, which will begin from May 22 to 25 at the TCV School Ground, will be participated twenty Tibetan athletes, including seven girls.
Speaking to gangkyi.com, one of the participants in the event, Yangchen Palmo said, "I decided to participate the moment I heard about Tibetan Olympics. To me participating is more important than winning".
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