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Dalai Lama “is not seeking independence for Tibet”

His Holiness the XIV Dalai Lama and President Barack Obama (courtesy White House, photo by Pete Souza)

In a meeting with Barack Obama in the White House on Saturday 16th July 2011, the Dalai Lama assured the US President that he is not seeking independence for Tibet.

President Obama, likewise, insisted that the USA supports the policy of the Chinese government on Tibet. He said that the US respects the People’s Republic of China’s stance that Tibet is a part of Chinese territory.

However, he also supports “the preservation of the unique religious, cultural, and linguistic traditions of Tibet and the Tibetan people” and underlines the importance of respect for human rights in Tibet. The President “encourages direct dialogue to resolve long-standing differences” between supporters of the former Tibetan leader, the Dalai Lama, and the present Chinese government of Tibet.

Recent celebrations of the Dalai Lama’s birthday at the start of July increased tensions between China and neighbouring Nepal as the Chinese government emphasised the importance of the One China policy, which maintains the territorial claims of China to Tibet and Taiwan.

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