New Delhi: Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama on Thursday appreciated Chinese President Xi Jinping as being open-minded and realistic, while expressing hope that he can take the India-China bilateral relations forward.
Speaking to reporters at a time when the Chinese head of state is in New Delhi to take the ties forward, the Dalai Lama however stressed that it is important to build Sino-Indian relations on the basis of mutual trust.
“Xi Jinping's thinking is more realistic and more open-minded, so he can learn more from India,” the Tibetan leader noted.
"I think the Chinese President should learn some of India's experience. Look, east India, south India, west India, north India, different language, different script. But no danger of separation. Isn't it? Democratic rule, rule of law and free media..." he said.
Reacting to Tibetans' protest in Delhi against the visiting Chinese President, the Dalai Lama stressed, "Actually the Tibetan problem (is) also (a) problem of India. Before 1950, you see the whole northern border, really peaceful, no single soldier. So India's problem."
The Dalai Lama, who lives in exile in northern India, however, added that “understanding comes through talks”.
"So sooner or later you have to solve these problems, not by force but by understanding and talk. Understanding comes through talk, only through personal contact."
China, which regards the Dalai Lama as a "splittist", or separatist, has ruled Tibet with an iron fist since Communist troops marched in in 1950 and regularly applies diplomatic pressure on countries to crack down on the activities of Tibetans.