Commonwealth Relations Office Message to Tibetan Government, December 16, 1950

[The Commonwealth Relations Office in London instructed the British High Commissioner in Delhi to communicate this message to the Tibetan Government.  The High Commissioner did not convey this message because "[i]f it came to the ears of the Chinese they would surely regard it as further evidence of British interference."]

Government of UK continues to maintain the friendly interest which they have taken in the maintenance of Tibetan autonomy* since August 1947, when the rights and obligations arising from the existing treaty provisions devolved on the GOI [Government of India].  Since the Government of the Chinese People's Republic has resorted to force instead of seeking to reach agreement on the question of Sino-Tibetan relations through the peaceful methods of discussion and negotiation, the Government of the United Kingdom are prepared to afford their general support to the Tibetan Government's appeal to the United Nations.

Source: Shakya, Tsering; The Dragon In the Land of Snow; 1999; Columbia University Press; p. 59.

*Note on the usage of "autonomy": "The Indian and British understanding of the word is based on what is commonly known as the Eden Memorandum, which recognised Tibet's right to 'internal' and 'external' autonomy."  Shakya, p. 473.