Former Tibetan political prisoner wins international democracy award

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Former Tibetan political prisoner wins international democracy award

Former Tibetan political prisoner Golog Jigme was named a recipient of the 2023 Democracy Award for Individual Courage at the National Endowment for Democracy’s 40th Anniversary Democracy Awards on Nov. 14.

According to a NED press release, the Individual Courage award honors democracy activists for their “overwhelming courage in the face of unspeakable consequences,” and was awarded to Golog Jigme on behalf of “all activists killed or imprisoned in 2023.”

Golog Jigme is both a human rights activist and filmmaker. In 2008, he co-produced the documentary “Leaving Fear Behind,” which highlighted the injustices faced by Tibetans under Chinese rule.

Golog Jigme and his co-producer Dhondup Wangchen were both imprisoned and tortured by Chinese authorities shortly after the film’s release. He was arrested three times between 2008 and 2012 before finally escaping Tibet in 2014.

Now residing in Switzerland, he continues to work with human rights organizations to “hold China accountable for [its] atrocities in Tibet,” the NED press release states.

“I am so happy to receive this award and believe that this honor recognizes the struggle of every Tibetans who has and continues to sacrifice their lives to speak up against the Chinese communist government,” the activist told RFA.

“But at the same time, it is also disheartening that there are still so many imprisoned Tibetans inside Tibet and many who have died inside these prisons.”

  • RFA report Nov 20, 2023