On March 10, 1959, General Chiang Chin-wu of Communist China invited the Tibetan leader to attend a theatrical show by a Chinese dance troupe.
He repeated the invitation with new conditions that no Tibetan soldier was to accompany the Dalai Lama and that his bodyguards be unarmed.
Tens of thousands of Tibetans gathered around the Norbulingka Palace to protect his life.
After consulting the Nechung Oracle on 17 March 1959 and performing a divinity, Hid Holiness decided to risk an escape from the country. Text modified with permission from www.dalailama.com
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