The New York Times reports that Dhondup Wangchen, a Tibetan filmmaker who was arrested after recording statements from his countrymen criticising the government’s rule of Tibet, is now on trial for subversion. His film, entitled Leaving Fear Behind, was smuggled out of China shortly before he was arrested in March 2008. He has apparently been tortured while in custody, which, unfortunately, does not seem surprising. Now he has written a letter, smuggled out of prison, saying that his trial on charges of state subversion has begun. This is a particularly blatant and unconscionable attempt by the government to stamp out any public discussion by Tibetans of the issues confronting, and everyone who cares about their own freedom or that of their neighbors should call upon the Chinese government to free Dhondup Wangchen. Furthermore, the public should pressure American authorities and other influential parties to pressure China to show leniency in this case. Since Dhondup Wangchen has apparently not been accused of violent acts or political organising, this seems like the sort of case where the Chinese government might bend under pressure.
Please see the take action page on the Leaving Fear Behind site for suggestions on contacting the authorities in China and in your home country.