Tibetan athlete makes history

10th August 2012

First Tibetan Olympian

A 22-year-old woman will make history this weekend when she becomes the first Tibetan to participate in the Olympic Games.

Born in Tsochang in the Tibetan province of Amdo, Choeyang Kyi (right) will compete in the 20km race walk on Saturday afternoon.

Proud Tibetan

Although she is officially representing China, Choeyang Kyi is a proud Tibetan. In a TV interview broadcast into Tibet, she identified herself as Tibetan.

However, unlike most athletes at the London 2012 Games, she is not free to speak to the press, so is unable to tell us about her pride.

Representing Tibet

Tsering, a Tibetan living in exile, said “even though she will be wearing a Chinese flag on her chest, her blood is Tibetan and she will be representing the Tibetan people.

“I am very proud of her but of course I hope for the day when she will be able to represent a free Tibet.”

Olympic support

Tibet supporters and Tibetans are gathering in London on Saturday afternoon to go to the free event which takes place in central London. Tibet flags will be waved to show the world that this athlete is Tibetan, despite China's efforts to ensure that Tibet has no representation at London 2012.

Update 13 August: Choeyang Kyi came third and won a bronze medal