Relations with China and the Dalai Lama on Tibet - ECFR's European Foreign Policy Scorecard
The Estonian president was the only European head of state who met with the Dalai Lama, but other member states failed to show much solidarity. Catherine. China has stridently opposed the Dalai Lama's visit to the northeastern Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh. But, rather than press the issue. Maybe thought China would collapse as the Soviet Union did. See Beijing in talks on Dalai Lama's return That's the current position. Worth mentionin.
Prima facie, this would appear to include all categories of events pertaining to the 60th anniversary of the Dalai Lama's arrival in India.
The Directive from the Cabinet Secretary specifically instructs the secretaries and heads of government departments that 'participation in these events should be discouraged' and 'accordingly you are requested to ensure appropriate action on the matter. That the message was not lost on Dharamsala emerged in the comment made by Ngodup Dhongchung, the Dalai Lama's representative in Delhi, when he confirmed that the event has been rescheduled and shifted to Dharamsala.
But we are guests of India. Indian people have been very generous to us. We understand the compulsions,' Dhongchung said.
We respect the Indian government's decision. We have no further comments. Among the Indian officials who received the Dalai Lama, centre, when he arrived in India in March was Har Mander Singh, left, the political officer responsible for the Kameng Frontier Division, and P N Menon, second from right, who served as India's consul general in Lhasa, and as intermediary to the Dalai Lama during the Tibetan uprising.
Ambassador Menon's son Shivshankar Menon later became India's foreign secretary and national security adviser. Kind courtesy Claude Arpi Anniversaries are certainly very significant for the Chinese -- and they would be aware of the celebrations being planned by the Tibetan exile community in India. In the backdrop of the developments in the past few years, they would certainly observe New Delhi's handling of the matter. Undoubtedly, the Note and its fallout would have been duly noted by Beijing and given the reported fact that it 'was sent a day before the Beijing visit of the Foreign Secretary, there seems to be a prima facie case for a quid pro quo having occurred, with China removing its objection to placing Pakistan on the grey list of the FATF Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering.
However, the phrasing provides scope for a degree of ambiguity, within which the government as also various political parties, have often operated. The Central Tibetan Administration in Dharamsala is registered under the Registrar of Societies Act which enables it to receive foreign funding. While there would be no official sanction or any endorsement of Tibetan activities bearing a 'political' nature, cultural, religious and other non-political activites have been regularly patronised by a wide range of politicians and civil society peronalities.
The Dalai Lama is invariably addressed as 'Your Holiness' at all public events. This is problematic for the Chinese who have employed an amazing array of epithets to describe him, the least offensve of which is 'splittist' and 'dangerous separatist.
What we are looking at is not so much a downgrading of the affairs of the Tibetan exile community, as reverting to the earlier approach of distancing the government from events and activities organised by the Dalai Lama or the Central Tibetan Administration. The interesting historical footnote here is that as the joint secretary of the East Asia division in the MEA, the current foreign secretary had ensured that there was no government participation in the '50 Years in Exile events' organised in In fact, there have been numerous other occasions in the past when the government has taken a step backwards or reconsidered its decision with regard to either hosting specific events or cancelled meetings scheduled with the Dalai Lama.
Often to our discomfiture. The question thus arises whether this note and circular indicates that the government is being cautious and circumspect, in view of the strong protests by China over the last few years involving the Dalai Lama's activities and in view of the tensions and strains that had begun to emerge between the two Asian giants.
This formulation would, however, appear to suggest that circumspection was somewhat in abeyance earlier. To some extent, if we look at the various developments over the past few years, there has certainly been a hardening of views on the Tibetan issue, within the strategic community.
Equally, we saw some rethinking taking place within official circles, viz the invitation to Lobsang Sangay -- president, Central Tibetan Administration -- to particiapte in the swearing-in of the Modi government on May 26, In fact, even the joint statement issued during Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's visit in did not mention Tibet, though there was a reference to the one-China policy and India's commitment to oppose any 'activity that is against the one-China principle.
To be sure, the prime minister himself has never met with the Dalai Lama though other political personalities have. Let us not forget that when then President Pranab Mukherjee hosted the Dalai Lama along with other Nobel Prize winners in Decemberthe Indian side had to issue an explanation as regards the the 'non-political' nature of the event.
In Octoberin a first, the then US ambassador to India, Richard Verma, visited Tawang, described by India as 'routine', which was criticised by the Chinese as 'interference. In Octoberthe Dalai Lama was given the go-ahead to visit Arunachal Pradesh for a religious festival in Aprilinviting a furious objection from China. It may be recalled that the Dalai Lama had been extended permission to visit Arunachal Pradesh for the first time in by the Manmohan Singh government. But the visit in went further when he was welcomed there by the chief minister of the state and the central minister of state of home affairs Kiren Rijuju, which made a qualitative shift as far as the Chinese were concerned.
The Dalai Lama on his part has not hesitated to laud the shedding of India's 'over-cautious' behaviour vis-a-vis China and the Tibetan issue has undoubtedly become embroiled in the politics within Arunachal Pradesh.
Reacting to Beijing's furious reaction during the Dalai Lama's April visit, the chief minister of the north eastern state declared that Beijing had no right to meddle since India shared a border with Tibet and not China. And above all, it would be well to recall the diplomatic fiasco that ensued following the Dalai Lama's visit to Mongolia in November China censured the Mongolian government and demanded an apology from the Mongolian government on pain of losing financial assistance and cancelled bilateral talks.
India did not have the capability to step in and offer to bail the Mongolians out -- and it would certainly be counterproductive to wade into Sino-Mongolian waters. Despite Prime Minister Modi's visit to Mongolia in May and the extension of a line of credit, subsequent actions on the part of the Mongolian government made it crystal clear who was calling the shots. Over the past few years, we have been witness to a plateau-ing of the momentum in India-China ties and despite the oft-repeated, rather vacuous homily, that 'both sides should not let differences become disputes', we have regrettably been unable to move forward.
The tripwires generating the tensions are China's consistent 'technical' opposition to the UN Security Council resolution to place Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorist Masood Azhar on the UN Terror list; going ahead with the construction of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor in the territory claimed by India, its veto on the Nuclear Suppliers Group waiver and the dragging of its feet on the issue of India's permanent membership of the UN Security Council.
Cumulatively, these have amounted to a blatant lack of 'sensitivity' to India's 'core' concerns. The general strategic discourse and commentary on China has also acquired rather tense overtones, and it is in that context in which many analysts have sought to justify the use of the 'Tibet card', thus giving some degree of credence to the PRC's accusation. Some have even gone to the extent -- rather erroneously -- of equating our Pakistan problem with China's Tibet problem.
This is not tenable in any sense whatsoever -- and there should be very little doubt that while India and China would conceivably not go to war over Pakistan -- they could certainly do so, over Tibet. It is hoped that Abba Aban's pronouncement is not headed towards fulfillment: It has only resulted in a vicious cycle and escalating costs.
The Dalai Lama Factor in Sino-Indian Relations
The 'core' interests of both countries are now intersecting in a manner that requires not just India and China -- but Pakistan as well -- to be on the same page and work in tandem, however unpalatable it may appear to certain sections of the strategic community on ether side. The gulf between the perception and the reality on the so-called 'non-negotiables', has to be narrowed for any quid pro quo to be realistically considered -- and this is not beyond the grasp of far sighted and creative diplomacy.
If the Chinese follow a more positive, constructive path, rather than the negative, destructive path that they have been following for the last 40 years, things would be different. What the Chinese have created is mutual misery.
We Tibetans suffer a great deal and face misery under the Chinese. At the same time, the Chinese themselves find it very difficult to stay there in Tibet. Does the fate of Tibet have in itself a message to the world?
I think since the tragedy of Tibet inmany Tibetan Buddhist practitioners and lamas have escaped from Tibet, and as a result we have a new opportunity to have closer contacts with faiths such as Christianity, Judaism and of course different Indian religions. Through this contact, we have a good opportunity to learn different traditions. In similar way, they have new ideas and new experiences from our religion. So there is mutual benefit.
Also as Buddhists, we consider it very important to study the facts and realities. Buddha himself said that it is important to investigate and experiment rather than to accept without reason.
That is the basic Buddhist attitude. Therefore, in recent years, we have had a closer relations with scientists in different fields.
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- 7 - Relations with China and the Dalai Lama on Tibet
In certain fields of study, there are certain relations between the two. Discussion brings mutual benefits. That is the benefit of becoming a refugee. Would you agree that the resettlement of a large number of Chinese in Tibet is China's 'final solution' for your country? I seems like it. For the last forty years, they have adopted various methods. In the s, they used a certain method. Then in the 60s and 70s they adopted a very cruel and harsh method.
Yet despite all these methods, they cannot buy the Tibetan mind or heart. The Tibetans still remain Tibetans.
The Chinese want to have some kind of genuine loyalty from the Tibetans, but that has never happened. I think their last alternative is to make the Tibetan people a minority in their own homeland, and thus, the Tibetan voice would be ineffective.
Is forced sterilisation of Tibetan women and men a part of China's genocide in Tibet? At one time, this was quite obviously happening. Recently, documents on birth control policy stated that it was carried out only on the Chinese not on the minorities. In reality, the same thing is happening to the minorities — the one child one family policy.
In one way, the Chinese say that the Tibetans need a larger population and more manpower to develop Tibet economically.How People of China Perceive Dalai Lama?
At the same time, the Chinese implement birth control for the Tibetans. This also is a clear indication that they want to bring more Chinese into Tibet. There have also been some incidents where sterilisation or abortion had been forced, but we don't have clear evidence. In the event that the China is allowed to complete its 'final solution' in Tibet, what do you see for the future of Tibet and Tibetan Buddhism? Will what is perhaps the most spiritually advanced civilisation i on earth disappear completely?
Oh yes, probably only what is found in the books will remain. That is the real danger. Once Tibet as a nation completely disappears or become insignificant then the Tibetan culture, the people and the Buddhism that we practice will be in great danger, even though there are more than centres in the world to teach Tibetan Buddhism. If the Tibetan nation completely disappears, I really don't know how much we can preserve.
It is a danger for one of the important Dharmas. If Tibet remains as Tibet, including the Tibetan culture and the Buddha Dharma, it eventually may help the Chinese nation in the spiritual field. The Chinese destroyed their old structure and philosophy, yet they failed to introduce anything new. Marxism has its good points and yet it still does not have the full answer for human life and problems.
So definitely, the Chinese community needs another different ideology or philosophy.
Dalai Lama faces cold shoulder as India looks to improve China ties | Reuters
Buddhism could perhaps become an important contribution to the Chinese mind, There is no doubt about it. If you go to China for a visit, what would you discuss? That is the key point laughter. My stand until now is that I want to make clear that Tibet is a separate country from China. But the future is open and there are three different options. Regarding options, there is still a lot to be worked out, so I do not feel that I should reveal too much at this moment.
At the moment, my position is that I do not want to break my links with the Chinese Government, at the same time I cannot discuss certain things that may discourage the Tibetan will and determination. I am thinking that eventually some sort of referendum among the Tibetans should be carried out. Then try to get some suggestions and thoughts of what the Tibetans really feel. I also want to get as many views of the Tibetans inside Tibet. At the same time, I do not want people to blindly follow my choice.
I want people's real feelings. I do not want to be imposing my will on the people. InI made a draft Constitution and made it clear that the power of the Dalai Lama can be changed with a two-thirds majority of the National Assembly.
So now, I really want to listen to the people's ideas.
Dalai Lama on 'Relationship with China' | Friends of Tibet (INDIA)
I prefer to make a number of options which I feel are possible, and to present them to the Tibetan people and listen to their wishes. It is my responsibility for the possibilities and the difficulties. This is my plan. In the near future, I think things will become clearer.
In the case that half the Tibetan people want independence and the other half do not want independence, then what would you say? I think more discussions will be useful. But then we have to think of the reality. Sometimes, though you want something, in reality it may not be practical. So we will see. If it is fifty, then I think a more thorough discussion will needful. What is a possible solution? The Tibetan people want complete independence, but the Chinese will never accept that.