Security men grab video at Tibetan group's screening

TERESA POOLE

Peking

Angry delegates at the women's world forum near Peking fought off an attempt by Chinese security officials to seize a video shown by a small group of exiled Tibetan women yesterday.

Nine Tibetan women who managed to obtain entry visas to China held a workshop where they showed a video about three generations of Tibetan women. The video included criticisms of China's family planning policies and was watched by about 50 people in a packed, windowless room within the official site of the Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) Forum at Huairou, outside Peking.

As the video finished, a plain-clothes security official and a hotel worker entered the room, squeezed through the audience and grabbed the tape from the machine. The angry organisers and delegates locked the door and there was scuffling as the cornered Chinese tried to escape. Amid shouting, the video was snatched back by the audience and quickly passed from hand to hand to the rear of the room, hidden in someone's bag, and smuggled out.

The issue of Tibet is even more sensitive than usual to the Chinese authorities because of today's 30th anniversary celebrations in Lhasa of the founding of the Tibet Autonomous Region, establishing formal Chinese rule. Lhasa is under tight security for the staged festivities, for which 270 senior Chinese officials have been flown into the city.

A spokeswoman for the Tibetan Women's Delegation said nine exiled Tibetans had managed to obtain visas for the forum, but that at least 17 others around the world were banned.

Phuntsok Dolma, a member of the delegation, said: "Our mission is to be a voice for Tibetan women in Tibet and in exile." She said that since their arrival in China, the group had been "followed everywhere". Plainclothes policemen with cameras and video-cameras had recorded all their movements and exchanges. Asked about the celebrations in Lhasa, Ms Dolma said: "It's such an insult."

Under UN rules, there should be freedom of expression within the site. Supatra Masdit, the forum convener, said she would "look into" surveillance of the Tibetans.

She confirmed that by Wednesday night, only 17,000 NGO delegates had arrived, less than half the 36,000 originally registered for the forum. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs admitted that 4,000 delegates to the NGO Forum and the UN World Conference on Women, starting Monday, have not yet received entry permits.

The two meetings, held every 10 years, seek to address the biggest problems facing women, including discrimination, sexual abuse, education and health.

Yesterday, the first plenary session was launched with a video speech by Aung San Suu Kyi, the recently released Burmese opposition leader.

As the first plenary session started, Amnesty International, the London- based human rights group, unfurled a "clothes line" of 12 T-shirts, each with a face of a woman who has been persecuted in her country. One was Chinese.

Later, Amnesty delegates carried posters of the women to a screening of a video on five human-rights victims. Two testimonies were from Tibetans, a nun, Tsultrim Dolma, and a labour organiser, Lu Jinghua. Security officials filmed and taped the second Amnesty demonstration, but withdrew when the screening began.

Suggested Topics
News
Alan Bennett has criticised the “repellent” reality shows which dominate our screens
tvBut he does like Stewart Lee
Life and Style
The Google Doodle celebrating the start of the first day of autumn, 2014.
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black and Ed Stoppard as her manager Brian Epstein
tvCilla Episode 2 review: Grit under the glamour in part two of biopic series starring Sheridan Smith
Sport
David Moyes and Louis van Gaal
football
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
News
i100
Life and Style
Vote with your wallet: the app can help shoppers feel more informed about items on sale
lifeNew app reveals political leanings of food companies
News
Former Governor of Alaska Sarah Palin, left, with her daughter, Bristol
newsShe's 'proud' of eldest daughter, who 'punched host in the face'
Sport
New Zealand fly-half Aaron Cruden pictured in The Zookeeper's Son on a late-night drinking session
rugby
Arts and Entertainment
Salmond told a Scottish television chat show in 2001that he would also sit in front of a mirror and say things like,
tvCelebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Life and Style
Carol O'Brien, whose son Rob suffered many years of depression
healthOne mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
Arts and Entertainment
The cover of Dark Side of the Moon
musicCan 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition? See for yourself
Life and Style
food + drink
News
Rob Merrick's Lobby Journalists were playing Ed Balls' Labour Party MPs. The match is an annual event which takes place ahead of the opening of the party conference
newsRob Merrick insistes 'Ed will be hurting much more than me'
News
A cabin crew member photographed the devastation after one flight
news
Voices
A new app has been launched that enables people to have a cuddle from a stranger
voicesMaybe the new app will make it more normal to reach out to strangers
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Pharmaceutical Computer System Validation Specialist

£300 - £350 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Pharmaceutical Computer ...

High Level Teaching Assistant (HTLA)

£70 - £90 per day: Randstad Education Birmingham: Higher Level Teaching Assist...

Teaching Assistant

£50 - £80 per day: Randstad Education Birmingham: Randstad Education is the UK...

Senior Java Developer - API's / Webservices - XML, XSLT

£400 - £450 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client is currently ...

Day In a Page

Secret politics of the weekly shop

The politics of the weekly shop

New app reveals political leanings of food companies
Beam me up, Scottie!

Beam me up, Scottie!

Celebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Beware Wet Paint: The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition

Beware Wet Paint

The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition
Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Can 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition?
Sanctuary for the suicidal

Sanctuary for the suicidal

One mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits