Tibetan, Uyghur and Chinese activists urge Google: ‘Respect human rights, don’t do China’s dirty work’

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June 13, 2019

Live online briefing concerning Google Dragonfly - the censored China search engine — and the company’s complicity in China’s human rights abuses, to be held days before shareholders’ meeting.

[LONDON] On Monday 17 June 2019, two days before the Alphabet shareholders’ meeting, [1] Tibetan, Uyghur and Chinese rights activists will join ethical consumer specialists to raise ongoing concerns about Google’s development of a censored search engine for China, codenamed Project Dragonfly. They will also discuss the shareholder resolution [2] calling for the company to be broken up, due to concerns about human rights violations. The panel will explore the serious governance changes needed at Google to institutionalise a firm commitment to upholding and promoting human rights.

To date the coalition of activists, representing those directly affected by the implementation of Project Dragonfly, have delivered four letters to Google management raising their concerns. There has been no acknowledgement or response to these letters.

PANEL: (See Speaker Biographies below)

Shahrazad Ghayrat, Project Officer, World Uyghur Congress

Lhadon Tethong, Executive Director, Tibet Action Institute

Teng Biao, Chinese human rights lawyer and activist

Sondhya Gupta, Senior Campaigner, SumOfUs

WHAT: Online media briefing on the human rights implications of Google’s Project Dragonfly, the Alphabet shareholder resolution and campaign actions taking place to coincide with Alphabet’s AGM on Wednesday 19 June.

WHEN: Monday, 17 June 2019 at 7:00 AM PDT / 10:00 EST / 15:00 BST / 16:00 CET / 22:00 CST

WHERE: The live briefing will be held via Zoom at https://zoom.us/j/834747159

Q&A: If you wish to ask a question to the panel please either join the live briefing - see link above - or email questions to mandie@tibetnetwork.org

For further information and media requests, please contact:

John Jones, Free Tibet | +44 (0)207 324 4605 | john@freetibet.org

Mandie McKeown, International Tibet Network | +44 (0)7748 158 618 | mandie@tibetnetwork.org

Sondhya Gupta, SumOfUs | +44 (0)781 118 6937 | sondhya@sumofus.org

Speaker Biographies:

Dr. Teng Biao is a Chinese human rights lawyer and scholar. One of the earliest promoters of the Rights Defense Movement in China, he co-founded two human rights NGOs – the Open Constitution Initiative and China Against the Death Penalty. He is currently a visiting fellow at the U.S.-Asia Law Institute, New York University.

Lhadon Tethong is Director at Tibet Action Institute where she leads a team of technologists and rights advocates in developing and advancing open-source communication technologies, nonviolent strategies and training programs for Tibetans and others facing human rights abuses. www.tibetaction.net

Sondhya Gupta is campaigns manager at consumer group SumOfUs, a global community of millions dedicated to stopping big corporations behaving badly. We use our power as consumers, workers and investors to hold the biggest companies in the world to account. www.sumofus.org

Shahrezad Ghayrat is the project assistant of the World Uyghur Congress, an organization representing the collective interests of the Uyghur population living in East Turkistan and abroad. Shahrezad was born in East Turkistan but migrated to Australia with her family a decade ago and since then she has been an Uyghur human rights advocate.

Moderator: John Jones is the Campaigns and Advocacy Manager for Free Tibet. The organisation was established in 1987 with the vision of a Tibet where Tibetans are able to determine their own future and the human rights of all living there are respected. www.freetibet.org

NOTES:

1. Alphabet Inc. became the parent company of Google in 2015. Alphabet’s AGM will take place on Wednesday 19 June in Sunnyvale, California.

2. SumOfUs shareholder resolution can be read at https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1652044/000130817919000205/lgoog2019_def14a.htm#lgooga069