March 8th, 2010 5:33 pm | by JAMES PITKIN News | Posted In: CLEAN UP, City Hall

UPDATED: Chinese Pressure at City Hall? Tibetans to Protest Today in Portland

Tibet flag

Amid reports that the Chinese government plans to lean on Portland's City Council today, the city's Tibetan community is planning a protest outside City Hall.

Jampa Lathsang, a volunteer for the Northwest Tibetan Cultural Association, says the political scuffle started last week when the City Council declared Wednesday, March 10, as Tibetan Awareness Day.

Lathsang says officials from the Chinese Consulate in San Fransisco are meeting with city officials today to oppose the decision to recognize Tibet's struggle for independence.

Indeed, it appears the resolution proclamation has already been scrubbed from the city's website. We have calls out to Mayor Sam Adams' spokesman and the Chinese Consulate to confirm details.

While we wait for their calls (without holding our breaths), local Tibetans are gearing up to rally at City Hall today from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. to bring attention to what they see as Chinese meddling.

"We want to respect the City of Portland to have the guts and gumption to recognize us," Lathsang says. "(Even) nations don't do it."

We'll update this post if and when we hear back from the Chinese and Adams spokesman Roy Kaufmann. There's a bet going here in the WW newsroom about which bureaucracy will be more responsive.

UPDATE: In the race between Adams' office and the Chinese government — Adams' office wins.

In an email, Kaufmann confirms Adams is meeting today with a representative of the Chinese consulate. We'll follow up with more details as they come.
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