'Roof of the world' rises to new heights

By MA YUNFEI in Lhasa | China Daily | Updated: 2021-07-30 09:46
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United States entrepreneur Shaun Rein, left, Xinhua News Agency journalist Miao Xiaojuan, second left, and US economist David Blair, right, talk with a farmer at his house in Nang county, Tibet autonomous region, on May 23 while Miao holds the farmer's son. XU YONGZHENG/XINHUA

Tibet makes far-reaching progress on many fronts

There are few places on Earth where humanity transcends the boundaries of race and nationality, where people can go beyond the human perspective and understand that they are at one with the universe.

Tibet autonomous region is one such destination.

This year marks the 70th anniversary of the peaceful liberation of Tibet. On May 23, 1951, the central government of the People's Republic of China, then still in its infancy, signed an agreement with the local government of Tibet on the peaceful liberation of the region, helping the people of Tibet break free from the fetters of imperialist invaders for good.

Democratic reform in the late 1950s abolished theocracy and feudal serfdom in Tibet. These significant changes, as noted in late United States journalist Israel Epstein's 1983 book Tibet Transformed, "were profoundly emancipatory, physically and mentally, for the overwhelming majority of Tibetans."

With strong support from the central government and the rest of China, and boosted by the efforts of people from ethnic groups in the region, Tibet is catching up with other parts of the country in terms of socioeconomic development.

A new modern socialist Tibet that is united, prosperous, culturally advanced, harmonious and beautiful is taking shape, underpinned by sustained stability and rapid development.

Xinhua News Agency's China Chat show brings its international audience firsthand experience of the lives of everyday Tibetans, local socioeconomic development and the real face of the new Tibet, possibly one of the most misunderstood places in the world.

Living in China for most of the past 24 years and first traveling to Tibet in 2001, Shaun Rein, founder and managing director of China Market Research Group, feared his return to the region would be a journey back in time to the Tibet of old, to an area left behind by the rest of the country.

"Tibet was so poor when I visited it the first time," Rein said, recalling long bumpy journeys along winding dirt roads.

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