Women in Tibet

As well as TWA’s international presence, working to raise awareness of the problems endured by Tibetan women in exile and in Tibet, it is a top priority of TWA to support the women inside Tibet as best we can and to disseminate information on their plight.

One crucial issue facing women in Tibet is the supression of reproduction rights; on this topic TWA has published a book entitled Tears of Silence, the first edition in 1994 and subsequent updated editions in 1995, 2002 and 2009. Research found that whilst forced abortions and compulosory sterilizations were no longer endemic after the 1980s, and the government’s approach changed in the mid 1990s to imposing fines rather than force, brutal enforcement of reproduction policies continues to occur. Furthermore, Tibetan women refugees reveal that women in Tibet are often unaware of their right to have more that two children, and to refuse abortions and sterilizations. They are also often unaware of alternative family planning methods such as contraception. This short video report on forced sterlization in Tibet offers a helpful introduction. In the light of China’s current plans to gain greater control of Tibet by resettling its entire nomadic population into fixed accomodation (see Purging the Treasure House: displacement and the status of the Tibetan nomad [TWA, 2011]), it seems that a wider enforcement of reproduction policies may be on the cards.

This page covers TWA’s work to support or campaign on behalf of women in Tibet. See our Tibet news page for other reports on Tibetan women.



Latest news:

08-28-2014 A pregnant woman commits suicide after hearing her husband's death in Chinese prison. TWA remain concerned about how the political unrest in Tibet and the use of lethal force by Chinese forces against peaceful Tibetan protestors are mak...

03-11-2014 Statement of TWA on the 55th Anniversary of the Tibetan Women's Uprising Day Today, Tibetans inside and outside Tibet commemorate the 55th anniversary of Tibetan Women's Uprising. On 12th March 1959, thousands of Tibetan wome...

12-12-2013 TWA urges the UN Delegation visiting China to heed to status of Tibetan Women in Tibet The Tibetan Women’s Association [i] is pleased to learn that an experts team representing ‘United Nations Working Group on Discrimination against ...

09-19-2013 Celebration of TWA’s 29th anniversary in exile September 10, 2013 Today as we celebrate the 29th year of re-establishment of Tibetan Women's Association in exile. Fore mostly, we hearty honour a...

03-11-2013 Central and Regional Tibetan Women’s Association commemorate the 54th Anniversary of National Tibetan Women’s Uprising Day Today on March 12th 2013, we, the Tibetan Women's Association, commemorate the 54th anniversary of National Tibetan Women's Uprising Day. March 12, 19...