China Cracks Down on Foreign Performers After Bjork 'Tibet' Outburst
SHANGHAI, China – China will be stricter on foreign performers after Icelandic singer Bjork shouted "Tibet! Tibet!" at the end of her concert in Shanghai this week, the government said Friday.
A statement by China's Culture Ministry said Bjork's outburst "broke Chinese law and hurt Chinese people's feelings."
Bjork shouted "Tibet!" after a passionate performance of her song "Declare Independence" on Sunday. The outburst drew rare public attention inside China to Beijing's often harsh rule over the Himalayan region.
The statement, posted on the Culture Ministry's Web site, also said "there is no country that admits that Tibet is an 'independent country.'"
Bjork has performed the song to support other independence movements in the past. She dedicated the song to Kosovo while performing last month in Japan. The lyrics include the phrase "Raise your flag!"
China's 58-year rule over Tibet has drawn frequent condemnation from foreign governments and activists, often inciting a prickly nationalism among the Chinese government and ordinary people. Many Tibetans consider the exiled Buddhist spiritual leader the Dalai Lama as their rightful leader.