France: To Support NTDTV, Politicians and Organizations in Many Countries Sign an Appeal Letter to the French President

On December 29th, 2008, a representative of New Tang Dynasty TV (NTDTV) France delivered a letter to the French president. The letter was launched by the NTDTV in France, together with many politicians, persons of importance and human rights organizations in different countries. It appealed to the French president Nicolas Sarkozy to use his important influence to intervene in the incident in which the Eutelsat satellite company ceased broadcasting NTDTV into China. The letter also urged president Sarkozy to safeguard China and press freedom in Europe, Recently, NTDTV and its supporters increased their pressure on Eutelsat.

NTDTV is the only free television station that broadcasts Chinese programmes to China in Chinese without control by the CCP. On the night between the 16th and 17th June 2008, which was several weeks before the 2008 Olympic games, Eutelsat, who was the NTDTV’s satellite service provider, stopped the NTDTV’s broadcasting signals towards Asia with the reason that there was some technical problem.

On 10th July 2008, the Press Without Boundary organization issued a public statement that proved with detailed information that the so-called technical problem was merely a fabricated excuse. The real purpose was to please the CCP in order to gain larger profit. On the 18th August, Press Without Boundary issued anther statement saying that even if there were a technical problem, the Eutelsat still has the ability to resume the NTDTV’s broadcasting signals.

Under these circumstances, NTDTV appealed around the world for support. In France, the vice Chairman of the French parliament Marc Le Fur, the former government minister Jack Lang and Francoise Hostalier, the MP Jacqueline Fraysse all sent letters to the France diplomatic and human rights secretary Rama Yade, asking the France government to intervene the affair in order to let the NTDTV’s broadcasting signals to be resumed as early as possible. The Chairman of the Tibet issue committee, which had 180 MPs held a press conference supporting NTDTV. Several large medias in France reported this issue.

Many politicians and persons of importance in European countries have made great efforts to support NTDTV. Until December 19th, there had been 315 EU MPs who signed a statement, asking the members of EU to make more effort to urge the Eutelsat resume NTDTV’s signal towards China. Among those who signed the statement were several vice Chairman of the EU Parliament, the Chairman of the Human Rights Committee, the principles of several different parties and principle of the China Affair Committee, etc. There was also a letter to the Eutelsat president from about 70 members of the USA’s congress supporting the NTDTV. Some international human rights organizations and famous democratic figures showed their support for NTDTV.

Due to Eutelsat's unwillingness to resume broadcasting NTDTV, and also due to the bad records of some large international enterprises when they were under the CCP’s pressure, following some politicians and persons of importance asking the France human rights and diplomatic department to intervene, the NTDTV French Branch united politicians in several countries to launch sending public letters to the French president Nicolas Sarkozy, asking him using his important influence to support NTDTV, to safeguard China and press freedom in the Europe. Lots of important Chinese democratic movement figures and organizations, together with several Hong Kong democratic MPs and other people showed their supports toward the letter.

On December 17th, five EU MPs signed a letters. In the letter they said that as the firm protector of human rights, they will invite the Eutelsat president Berretta to visit the EU parliament headquarters in France during its common conference in January, to talk about this issue. There will be more EU MPs and human right organizations that are interested in this issue.

On the 29th Dec., the NTDTV French Branch delivered the letter to the presidential office, together with the name lists of the launchers and the persons who signed it. It is known that many politicians and persons of importance are to write the president letters in person. And the signatures are being collected and will be delivered to the president.

All the relative information will also be delivered at the same time to the French Prime Minister, Diplomatic and European Affaire Minister, diplomatic and human rights secretary, the NTDTV president and the Eutelsat president.

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