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Tibetan TV presenters ordered to wear skin chubas
29 April 2006
There was a small but alarming news item on the Tibetan service of Radio Free Asia today.
Recently presenters at the Amdo Tso-ngo TV channel in Qinghai, China,
were instructed by the head of the Chinese government's Information
Centre and United Front Department that they must wear animal skin
costumes, chubas, while presenting the news. When they said that they
did not have any, the presenters were told that this was a political
issue and that if they did not have a skin chuba then they must buy
one. They were then immediately given money by the authorities for this.
The Chinese head of the Qinghai TV channel was interviewed by Radio
Free Asia on 27 April 2006. He confirmed the story and that funds had
been provided by the Chinese government's United Front Department to
purchase the animal skin chubas.
The link to the Radio Free Asia programme (which is in the Amdo language) is www.rfa.org/tibetan/dazoed.
We are trying to find out more, and in particular how widespread this
instruction by the authorities is regarding the purchase and wearing of
skin chubas, and whether it includes endangered species such as tiger
and leopard skins that are protected by Chinese law and CITES.