Prefer to stay in India, no plans to meet Chinese president, says Dalai Lama

WION Web Team
NEW DELHI Published: Nov 10, 2021, 12:22 PM(IST)

File photo: Dalai Lama. Photograph:( AFP )

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After a failed anti-Chinese uprising in 1959, the 14th Dalai Lama fled Tibet and came to India where he set up a government-in-exile.

The foremost spiritual leader of Tibetan Buddhism, the 14th Dalai Lama, on Wednesday criticised Chinese officials, saying they "don't grasp the multiplicity of diverse cultures" there and that the majority Han ethnic group has too much power.

Though the Dalai Lama has stated that he has no plans to meet China's leader, Xi Jinping, he has stated that he would want to return to see old friends as "I am becoming older" - but would avoid Taiwan since ties between the two countries are "very touchy."

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"I'd rather stay here in India, quietly," he remarked, hailing the country as a centre of religious harmony. 

The Tibetan spiritual leader, who has often expressed thanks to the Indian government for providing him and his followers with asylum in the nation, was questioned about visiting Taiwan during an online news conference.

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"I know Communist Party leaders since Mao Zedong. Their ideas (are) good. But sometimes they do much extreme, tight control," he said.

Since fleeing Tibet in the aftermath of an uprising in 1959, the Dalai Lama, a supremely important figure in Tibetan Buddhist tradition, has been residing in India as a refugee.

He advocates for Tibetan welfare while continuing to advocate for diplomatic approaches to discussions with China about Tibetan autonomy and the protection of Tibetan culture, particularly Tibetan religious rights.

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The Chinese Communist Party, led by President Xi Jinping, has weakened the decision-making capabilities of Tibet's local government, which has governed the country since the Chinese invasion in 1949.

Tibet is likewise regarded as the world's second least free territory, because to long-standing tyranny.

During the 48th UN Human Rights Council Session in September, delegations from the United States, Denmark, Germany, and the European Union criticised China for religious, linguistic, and cultural restrictions enforced by the Jinping-led government. 

(With inputs from agencies)

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