Start ``unconditional`` talks with Dalai Lama: US to China

The US has asked China to start "unconditional" talks with the Dalai Lama and address policies that have created tension in Tibet, the CTA said.

IANS| Last Updated: Jun 07, 2014, 21:08 PM IST

Dharamsala: The US has asked China to start "unconditional" talks with the Dalai Lama and address policies that have created tension in Tibet, the CTA said here on Saturday.

"Well, as we`ve long said, we are deeply concerned about the poor human rights situation in Tibetan areas of China," US State Department spokesperson Marie Harf told reporters in Washington Friday.

"We have continued to urge the Chinese government to engage in substantive dialogue with the Dalai Lama or his representatives without preconditions as a means to reduce tensions, obviously urge China to address policies that have created tensions in Tibetan areas and that threaten the Tibetan unique culture," Harf said.

"As envisioned in the Tibetan Policy Act of 2002, we continue (our) efforts to open a consulate in Lhasa, also continue to request the Chinese government allow a consular officer to visit Tibet and ethnically Tibetan areas of China," she said.
A spokesperson for the Central Tibetan Admnistration (CTA) based here said Tibetan political leader Lobsang Sangay in an interview with German media Deutsche Welle said the new Chinese leadership would review its hard-line approach towards Tibetans.

"We hope the Xi Jinping-led government will review its hard-line approach and introduce liberal policies towards Tibetans. I hope that President Xi Jinping will accept dialogue as the only way to resolve the Tibet issue peacefully," Sangay said.

"That is exactly what the `middle-way approach` is all about. We would like to see an end to the present repression in Tibet. If granted genuine autonomy within the framework of the Chinese constitution, we do not seek separation from China," he added.

The Tibetan administration-in-exile June 5 launched a campaign to reach out to the international community to counter the Chinese "misinformation campaign" on its "middle-way approach" to resolve the Tibetan issue.

The "middle-way approach" favours "genuine autonomy" for Tibetans within the framework of the Chinese constitution and does not speak of independence.

A day after the launching of the renewed campaign to seek genuine autonomy, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson said, "the door to talks is always open, but China will only talk to the Dalai Lama`s personal representatives and only about his personal future, not anything to do with Tibet".

China and the Dalai Lama`s envoys have held nine rounds of talks since 2002 to resolve the Tibetan issue.
In the last round of talks -- the ninth -- held in Beijing in January 2010, the government-in-exile submitted an explanatory note to the Chinese leadership to clarify its stand on genuine autonomy for the Tibetan people.

On the conclusion of that round, the statement the Chinese side issued said the two sides had "sharply divided views, as usual".

The Tibetan administration in exile is based in this north Indian hill town.