Facts about Tibet
Tibet lies at the centre of Asia, with an area of 2.5 million square kilometres (approximately 1 million square miles).
Despite over 50 years of Chinese occupation of Tibet, the Tibetan people refuse to be conquered and subjugated by China.
The Tibetan Plateau is the highest and biggest plateau in the world, so Tibet is referred to as “the roof of the world”.
For Tibetans, the term Tibet means the 3 provinces of U'Tsang, Kham and Amdo, the area traditionally known as Tibet before China's invasion.
The English word Tibet is derived from the Arabic word Tubbat. This word is in turn derived via Persian from the Turkic word Tobad, meaning ‘the heights’.
Tibet was occupied by China in 1949, and the Dalai Lama fled into exile in India in 1959.
Hundreds of thousands of Tibetans have died as a direct result of Chinese occupation since 1949.
There are six million Tibetans in Tibet and roughly 150,000 Tibetans in exile in India and other countries.
The Dalai Lama has devolved his political authority to the elected exile prime minister, who assumed full political authority in August 2011.
Thousands of Tibetans cross the mighty Himalaya on foot every year into exile, risking death, injuries and arrest.
Most Tibetans are Buddhist, but there are Muslims, Christians and practitioners of Bon, the indigenous religion of Tibet.
In 1948 Tibetan government representatives traveled to the US, UK and France on Tibetan government issued passports.
The exiled Tibetan people elected their first Prime Minister in 2000
In 2008, Tibetans took part in more than 130 separate peaceful protests against the Chinese government across the Tibetan Plateau.
Displaying a photograph of the Dalai Lama in Tibet can result in arrest.
In 1995 the Chinese government abducted the 6 year old Panchen Lama, one of Tibet's most important spiritual leaders. He is still missing.
The longest epic poem in the world is the story of a legendary Tibetan king, Gesar of Ling.
The Tibetan Plateau is the Earth's "Third Pole," providing life-sustaining waters for and regulating weather across south and east Asia.
March 10 is Tibetan National Uprising day. It marks the massive uprising in Tibet in 1959 that led to the escape of the Dalai Lama into exile.
Yak is a Tibetan term for the male of the species. Its female counterpart is called Dri.
Tibetans are denied many of the rights enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, including the right to self- determination, freedom of speech and religion.
Untll 1949 Tibet had its own government that managed its own domestic and foreign affairs; Tibet had its own national flag and its own currency.
According to Amnesty International more than 1,000 Tibetans were unaccounted for after the protests of 2008.
In the Tibetan Lunar Calendar, the year 2009 corresponds to the year 2136, the Year of the Earth Ox.
Prior to the uprisings of 2008, the last major protests by Tibetans against China's occupation of Tibet took place in 1989, when martial law was declared.