Nepal to Resume Issuing Travel Documents to  Tibetan Refugees

The government of Nepal Tuesday decided to resume issuing travel documents to Tibetan and Bhutanese refugees, who have been sheltering in Nepal under the aegis of the United Nations High Commission for Refugees. The King-led government, in October 2005, had abruptly decided to halt issuing travel documents and also exits permits for Tibetan people in transit to asylum in India.

However, Nepal has not taken any decision regarding issuing of exit permits to Tibetans in transit. Nepal is under pressure from other nations including the European Parliament, to issue exit permits to Tibetans. The EU recently adopted a resolution to this effect . Mr. Dorjee tells VOA that there are as many as 20,000 Tibetans in Nepal and only 10,000 of them are eligible for travel documents. "It's a positive action of the new democratic government to decide to issue travel permits to Tibetans. We welcome it", said Mr. Dorjee. A member of the Tibetan community in Nepal said, "All Tibetans in transit believe the democratic government will not repeat what the erstwhile government had done."