Thursday, February 18, 2010

German leaders zigzag in relations to Dalai Lama

As the Dalai Lama meets with President Barack Obama, German leaders may be thinking back to their own past controversies with China over Tibet's spiritual leader.

Whenever the Dalai Lama goes anywhere, the Chinese get annoyed.

The spiritual leader of the Tibetan people is seen by the Chinese as a threat to their country's unity, and they see every meeting with him as an expression of support for the break-up of their country. Now it's the United States and President Barack Obama that are the object of Chinese displeasure. But the Germans have also had their fair share of Dalai Lama troubles in the past.

Back in 1996, the then-German foreign minister, Klaus Kinkel, found his invitation to China withdrawn after the German parliament voted to condemn Chinese repression in Tibet.

Kinkel had himself met the Dalai Lama the year before, but, in a gesture which was highly criticized at the time, he refused to accept the white shawl which the Dalai Lama always hands out. Adrienne Woltersdorf, head of Deutsche Welle's Chinese service, said she thought the gesture reflected the problems Germany has with the Dalai Lama quite accurately.

To read more:,,5254973,00.html

Source of the photo:
I respect and admire any politician who has at least so much character to meet the Dalai Lama and ignoring all the pressure the chinese government tries to put on other nations not to welcome the Dalai Lama. Tibet is not China! It is a occupied, sovereign state, unrightly and illegal occupied by the Chinese.

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