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Palden Gyatso

Tibetan monk and former prisoner of conscience

Palden Gyatso is a Tibetan Buddhist monk and former prisoner of conscience who spent 33 years in Chinese prisons and labor camps. Gyatso was arrested in 1959 by Chinese authorities for a peaceful demonstration and forced to participate in “re-education” classes. He was starved, endured hard labor, and was brutally tortured. Released from prison in 1992, Gyatso fled to India and brought with him some of the instruments of torture used against him as proof of the abuses of the Chinese regime. Gyatso has dedicated his life to raising awareness about the plight of the Tibetan people. He has testified before the United Nations and Congress. His memoir, “The Autobiography of a Tibetan Monk,” was published in 1997. He is the subject of the 2008 film “Fire Under the Snow.”

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