HC Deb 09 January 2001 vol 360 cc508-9W
Mr. Corbyn

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations have been made to the Government of China concerning the continued detention of Ngawang Choephal, a Tibetan; and if he will make a statement. [144523]

Mr. Battle

We remain deeply concerned about the case of Ngawang Choephal, and raise his case regularly with the Chinese authorities. I raised the case with the then Chinese Vice-Foreign Minister, Wang Yingfan, in Beijing in November 1999 and urged that Choephal's mother. Sonam Deckyi, be allowed to visit him. A visit took place in August 2000. We remain concerned at reports that Choephal may be in poor health. During the most recent round of the UK/China human rights dialogue in October 2000, we made a specific request that his sentence be reviewed in the light of these reports. At that meeting, the Chinese stated Choephal was in good health. We will continue to press this case.

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