Dalai Lama envoys arrive in China for talks

The talks, scheduled from July 1-2 in Beijing, aim to mend fences with the Dalai Lama who fled into exile in 1959 after an abortive uprising against Chinese rule in Tibet.

Dalai Lama envoys arrive in China for talks
Senior envoys of the Dalai Lama arrive in China on Monday to meet the government over the issue of Tibet, the Tibetan government-in-exile said.

The talks, scheduled from July 1-2 in Beijing, aim to mend fences with the Dalai Lama who fled into exile in 1959 after an abortive uprising against Chinese rule in Tibet.

This is the second meeting between the two sides since a crackdown on protests against Chinese rule in Tibet earlier this year, which led to an international diplomatic chorus for China to hold a dialogue with the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader.

Chinese officials met the Dalai Lama's representatives for talks on May 4, but further discussions originally set to start in June were postponed after an earthquake in China in May killed about 70,000 people.

"His Holiness the Dalai Lama has instructed the envoys to make every effort to bring about tangible progress to alleviate the difficult situation for Tibetans in their homeland," a statement from the government-in-exile, which is based in the town of Dharamsala in northern India, said.

China's Xinhua news agency said over the weekend that Chinese authorities had announced that "relevant central government departments will meet personal representatives of the Dalai Lama at his request in early July".

The arrival of the Dalai Lama's envoys coincides with a visit to China by U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who pressed Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi on Tibet and human rights matters, saying Americans felt deeply about these issues.

The Dalai Lama says he wants autonomy for the strategic Himalayan region, but Beijing brands him a "splittist" or separatist.

China blames the "Dalai Lama clique" for violence in Tibet in March and protests that disrupted the Olympic torch relay in several countries.The Dalai Lama has said he supports the Olympics and has called for calm during the Beijing Games.

Reuters
Last Mod: 30 Haziran 2008, 15:29
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