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Illiteracy Has increased in Tibet: Tibetan NGO

[WTN-L World Tibet Network News. Published by The Canada Tibet Committee. Issue ID: 2006/01/23; January 23, 2006.]

OneWorld.net, UK
January 22, 2006

The most recent statistics available for the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) reveal that the proportion of the local population that cannot read or write increased by more than 10 percent, to 54.9 percent in 2003, from 43.8 percent in 2002.

This places the TAR against the trend in all other western provinces of the People's Republic of China (PRC), where illiteracy rates decreased in 2003, as in previous years. Similarly, the proportion of the population in the TAR with primary, secondary or tertiary levels of education also fell in 2003, meaning that the population was on the whole less educated in the 2003 survey than in the 2002 survey.

Given that the surveys in the TAR mostly look at ethnic Tibetans, who account for over 90 percent of the registered TAR population, if these findings are even remotely accurate they indicate a marked failure of the Western Development Strategies of the PRC to improve education levels among Tibetans, despite official claims to the contrary.

SOURCE: Tibet Information Network


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