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Monday, 30 August 2004
Page: 26761

Senator Brown asked the Minister representing the Minister for Foreign Affairs, upon notice, on 12 May:

(a) Will the Government act to help save Tenzin Delek Rinpoche, a Buddhist monk, who is to be executed in Tibet by Chinese authorities; and (b) what information does the Government have on his plight.

Senator Hill (Minister for Defence) —The following answer has been provided by the Minister for Foreign Affairs to the honourable senator's question:

(a) The Australian Government has made representations to the Chinese authorities about Tenzin Delek on a number of occasions including in December and January 2001/2002 following his arrest, during the Human Rights Dialogue held in Beijing in July/August 2003 and most recently in December 2003.

(b) The Chinese authorities responded that Tenzin Delek has been convicted of bombing and incitement to split the nation. They advised he is serving a suspended death sentence which is due for review in December 2004 and that if he does not commit a criminal act before his review his death sentence could be commuted to a 15-20 year sentence. They advised that he is serving his sentence in Chuandong Prison, Sichuan Province and is in good health.