NTDTV and Supporters Send Letter to French President Regarding Eutelsat
(Clearwisdom.net) On December 29, 2008, representatives of the New Tang Dynasty Television (NTDTV) French branch delivered a letter to the French Presidential Palace. The letter was jointly signed by the NTDTV branch, political leaders and human rights groups from different countries. Regarding Eutelsat turning off NTDTV's broadcast signal to China under pressure from the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), the letter called upon French President Nicolas Sarkozy to play an important role and intervene to defend freedom of the press in China and Europe, which is of great importance for China, Europe and the whole world.
NTDTV is the only free television station that broadcasts in Chinese to China without submitting to any intervention from the CCP. Between June 16 and the evening of June 17, 2008, that is, several weeks ahead of the 2008 Olympics, NTDTV's satellite service provider, Eutelsat, shut down its broadcast signal to Asia with a "technical problem."
On July 10, 2008, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) released a report with detailed information testifying that the "technical problem" that Eutelsat initially blamed for the shutdown was an excuse. Its real motivation was to curry favor with the CCP. On August 18, RSF released another report pointing out that even though there was a technical problem, Eutelsat was still able to restore NTDTV's broadcast signal to China.
NTDTV then called upon support worldwide and has received considerable responses. In France, Vice President of the French National Assembly Marc Le Fur, former French ministers Jack Lang and Francoise Hostalier, and French parliamentarian Jacqueline Fraysse wrote to the French State Secretary in charge of foreign affairs and human rights Rama Yade, asking the French government to intervene, so that NTDTV's broadcast signal to China would be restored as soon as possible. The Chairman of the French National Assembly Working Group on Tibetan Issues, comprising of 182 members, held a press conference in France to support NTDTV.
Politicians from several European countries have made various efforts to support NTDTV. As of December 19, 315 European parliamentarians have signed a statement, requesting the member states of the European Union to make efforts to urge Eutelsat to restore NTDTV's signal to China as soon as possible. Of these signatories, there are a number of European Parliament vice-chairmans, Chairman of the Parliamentary Human Rights Committee, a number of people in charge of different parties and groups, and heads of China Affairs delegations, etc. Seventy congressmen in the United States jointly signed a letter to the president of Eutelsat to express their support for NTDTV. Some international human rights groups and renowned Chinese democracy movement advocates and groups have also expressed their support for NTDTV.
NTDTV and Its Supporters Increase the Pressure on Eutelsat
Given that Eutelsat has still not restored NTDTV's signal, the NTDTV French branch and its supporters jointly initiated and signed a letter to the French President Nicolas Sarkozy.
On December 17, 2008, five European parliamentarians jointly signed a letter. They stated in the letter that being firm defenders of human rights, they invited the president of Eutelsat Berretta to meet at the European Parliament headquarters in Strasbourg, France during the European Parliament's plenary session in January. They hoped to address Eutelsat's actions regarding NTDTV's broadcast signal.
The NTDTV French branch delivered the letter to the French Presidential Palace on December 19, 2008, together with a list of names of individuals who jointly initiated the letter and a list of names for the first batch of signatories. Some politicians and celebrities are writing letters personally to the French President. The initiators will continue collecting signatures and deliver them to the French President.