US revives issue of Panchen Lama's disappearance; China has no answers

WION New Delhi, Delhi, India May 20, 2020, 10.46 PM(IST) Edited By: Palki Sharma

Panchen Lama Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

The US has been asking China where Panchen Lama -- the second seniormost figure in Tibetan Buddhism, after the Dalai Lama.
It's been 25 years since he was taken into ''protective custody' -- when he was just 6 years of age. 

While Taiwan cannot accept becoming part of China under its "one country, two systems" offer of autonomy, China says "reunification" is inevitable and that it will never tolerate Taiwan's independence -- putting the issue on the backburner.

But it's still not celebration time for China, as it is reeling under pressure from the United States of America.

The US has now adopted a two-pronged strategy to corner China at the World Health Organisation's (WHO) World Health Assembly (WHA) meet.

The first bet is Tibet.

The US has been asking China where Panchen Lama -- the second seniormost figure in Tibetan Buddhism, after the Dalai Lama.
It's been 25 years since he was taken into ''protective custody' -- when he was just 6 years of age. 

Human rights organisations termed him as the youngest political prisoner in the world.

Ge-Dhun Choek-Yi Nyima must be 31 now. But his whereabouts are still unknown.

In 1996, China said he was at the risk of being kidnapped by separatists and was being kept at a safe location. In 2007, China said he was receiving a cultural Chinese upbringing -- his safety was still at risk. In 2015, China said he was living a normal life and apparently, did not wish to be disturbed.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has now been asking China of his whereabouts.

China is still keeping mum.

The second bet is coronavirus. The US has not left any stone unturned to blame the spread on China. And at WHA meet, it's furthering its offensive against the country.