No Excuses for Foreign leaders meeting Dalai Lama says China

Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama, Patron of Children in Crossfire, gestures during a press conference in Londonderry, Northern Ireland September 11, 2017. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne

Vastavam web:  Foreign leaders can’t think they can get away with meeting exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama just because they are doing it in a personal capacity, as they still represent their government, a senior Chinese official said on Saturday.Visits by the Dalai Lama to foreign countries infuriate China, and fewer and fewer national leaders are willing to meet him, fearing the consequences of Chinese anger, though some have tried to placate Beijing by saying they are meeting him in a personal not official capacity.

Zhang Yijiong, who heads the Communist Party’s Tibet working group, told reporters on the sidelines of a party congress that there could be no excuses to meeting the Dalai Lama.“Officials, in their capacity as officials, attending all foreign-related activities represent their governments. So I hope governments around the world speak and act with caution and give full consideration their friendship with China and their respect for China’s sovereignty,” he added.

China took control of Tibet in 1950 in what it calls a “peaceful liberation” and has piled pressure on foreign governments to shun the Dalai Lama, using economic means to punish those who allow him in.China also insists that Tibet in an integral part of its territory and has been for centuries.