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Obama receives the Dalai Lama in private so as not to offend China

The president of the USA, Barack Obama, held a private meeting with the Dalai Lama, the fourth of his mandate, despite the “firm opposition” to the meeting expressed in advance with ChinaBut the White House made it clear that the government still does not support the independence of Tibet.

The place chosen for Obama’s meeting with the Tibetan religious leader was the Hall of Maps and not the Oval Office, normally reserved for the president’s appointments with other heads of state.

As White House spokesman Josh Earnest explained in his daily press conference, it was a “personal” meeting, motivated by Obama’s “affection” for him. Dalai Long.

In the past, the US president has expressed “his appreciation for the teachings of the Dalai Lama and believes in preserving the unique religious, cultural and linguistic traditions of Tibet, “Earnest explained.

The only testimony of the meeting between the two was an image released by the official White House photographer, Pete Souza, in which Obama was greeting the Dalai Lama at the entrance to the Hall of Maps.

Earnest reiterated that the US position on Tibet “has not changed.”

The United States considers Tibet part of China and therefore does not support “the independence of the Tibetans,” the spokesman said.

China claims that Tibet has been an inseparable part of its territory for centuries, while Tibetans argue that the region was for a long time virtually independent until it was occupied by communist troops in 1951.

“As he Dalai Lama like President Obama, they value the importance of a constructive and productive relationship between the United States and China, “Earnest noted.

Since coming to the White House in 2009, Obama has privately hosted the Dalai Lama on three other occasions, the last one in February 2014.

As happened then, when China presented a formal protest for that meeting, now Beijing has shown in advance its “firm opposition” to the meeting between the Tibetan leader and Obama.

“The Dalai Lama He is not just a religious figure, he is a political exile who has long been involved in anti-Chinese separatist activities under the cover of religion, “a spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry, Lu Kang, said today at a press conference.

Lu said Beijing informed Washington of its “strong opposition” to the meeting, as Tibet’s affairs are “China’s domestic issues” and no country has the right to interfere in them.

“China is confident that the United States will keep its commitment that Tibet is part of China and that it will not support the independence of Tibet,” he concluded.

The Dalai Lama He is currently in Washington, where yesterday he met with various members of Congress, both Democrats and Republicans, and gave a speech at the Institute of Peace, where he began by offering a minute of silence for the victims of the shooting in Orlando, Florida. ) last weekend.

“As a figure revered by Tibetans and by people throughout the world, His Holiness (the Dalai Lama) reminds us of our great responsibility to act to safeguard human rights, promote equality and protect the environment, “said in a statement the leader of the Democratic minority in the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi.

“His friendship with the United States and the respect he arouses in leaders of both parties serve as a powerful tribute to the justice of the cause of the autonomy of Tibet,” added the congresswoman.

Source: EFE


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