Rights Group Urges China to Stop New Housing Campaign that Deepen Rural  Poverty in Tibet

Chinese Government campaign requiring Tibetan villagers to rebuild their houses under strict official specifications is leading Tibetans to poverty rather than boosting economic development. Local Chinese officials have ordered Tibetans that clean, modern houses are necessary to make good impression on growing numbers of visitors and tourists as the region modernizes. The report says that the campaign's stipulations for the financing of reconstruction also stand to impoverish affected Tibetans. Sophie Richardson, deputy Asia director of Human Rights Watch tells VOA that even the most affluent households have been forced into debt and those who default on their loans forfeit the right to occupy the house the Tibetans have built or started to build.