Sangay for peaceful solution on Tibet

Last Updated: Wed, Jan 02, 2013 12:40 hrs

Dharamsala, Jan 2 (IANS) The Tibetan government-in-exile here Wednesday reiterated its commitment to a peaceful resolution of the Tibet issue and appealed to Tibetans not to undertake drastic action, including self-immolation.

The Tibetan leadership remains firmly committed to non-violence and the 'middle-way approach' and strongly believes that the only way to resolve the issue of Tibet is through dialogue, a statement quoting Lobsang Sangay, the elected leader of the Tibetan people, said here.

"We are ready to engage in meaningful dialogue anywhere and at anytime," he said.

The Dalai Lama's envoys and the Chinese have held nine rounds of talks since 2002 to resolve the Tibetan issue but no major breakthrough has been achieved so far.

The last talks were held in Beijing in January 2010.

On the ongoing self-immolations in Tibet to protest Beijing's "repressive policies" and demand the return of the Dalai Lama to his homeland, 43-year-old Sangay said: "We continue to appeal to Tibetans not to undertake drastic actions, including self-immolations."

Meanwhile, a two-day meeting of the Tibetan Task Force on Negotiations concluded here Tuesday.

The meeting reviewed the deepening political crisis in Tibet, specifically the tragic spate of self-immolations, and discussed the changes in the Chinese leadership and their implications on the Tibetan issue, a spokesperson for the government-in-exile told IANS.

He said it was also decided that the new task force would be reconstituted with additional new members and a meeting would be convened soon after the National People's Congress session in March, when the new Chinese leadership will assume full responsibility.

The task force was set up in 1999 to assist the envoys to hold talks with the Chinese.

Meanwhile, Lodi Gyari, the former special envoy of the Dalai Lama who participated in all nine round of negotiations, said the stalled dialogue process with China failed to make much progress under the decade-long leadership of President Hu Jintao.

Speaking at a conference on the implications of the leadership transition in China here Sunday, the former special envoy said he remained "hopeful considering reports that Xi's (Jinping) style of working is similar to that of former president Jiang Zemin".

According to him, Jiang Zemin took interest in Tibet.

Gyari and another envoy Kelsang Gyaltsen resigned in May last year, citing frustration over the lack of positive response from the Chinese side.

The Dalai Lama has lived in India since fleeing his homeland in 1959. The Tibetan exile administration is based in this north Indian hill-town.

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