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China imposes New Border Restrictions in Tibetan Border Regions as Dalai Lama Launches India Teaching Event

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FILE - Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, is seen in an undated photo. VOA
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China, Jan 4, 2017: China imposed new border restrictions in Tibetan border regions Sunday, citing risks from terrorism, but the new measures also come as Tibetan’s spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, begins a popular Buddhist teaching event in India.

The Chinese state-run Global Times newspaper reported Monday that the new measure is aimed at combating the risk of ‘terrorism’ and ‘separatism’ in the region. Critics say authorities frequently invoke such fears when imposing new security restrictions on Tibetans, and Tibetan exile news media say there are signs the measures are aimed more at preventing Tibetans from traveling than improving security.

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The new regulation was first announced in December by Tibet Daily, an official Tibetan language news outlet, which said it would take effect on January 1, 2017; however, the Tibetan language articles did not use the word terrorism as reason to make the restriction.

On December 15, Tibet Daily quoted Bagdro, the deputy head of Tibet border police force, as saying the “renewed” regulation focuses on restricting movements in border areas and stabilizing the region through economic and social development.

According to Tibet Post, a Dharamsala-based newspaper, the Chinese officials have confiscated passports of many Tibetans in Tibet in recent weeks.

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The Dalai Lama is beginning teachings known as the Kalachakra in Bodh Gaya, India on Tuesday. It is the spiritual leader’s most popular Buddhist teaching and is held at a holy site that’s believed to be where Buddha attained his enlightenment.

China has been showing particularly sensitivity to Tibetans from Tibet attending Kalachakra teachings in India by the Dalai Lama. According to Tibetan exile media reports, hundreds of Tibetans recently traveled to India, but the Chinese officials summoned them back to Tibet before the teaching began.

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In 2012, thousands of Tibetans were believed to have been detained upon returning from the Kalachakra teaching. Chinese officials did not reveal the number of detainees, but according to International Campaign for Tibet, about 8,000 people from Tibet had attended the teaching in that year.

Tightening controls in Tibetan border areas has long been backed by Chinese President Xi Jinping. In 2012, at the 18th Party Conference, Xi said, “To govern the nation, one must govern the borders; to govern the borders, we must first stabilize Tibet.” This statement has since been seen as the foundation of Xi’s Tibet policy. (VOA)

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Dalai Lama Makes Donation to Help Flood-Stricken Kerela

"I offer my condolences to you, to the families who have lost loved ones, and to all affected by the flooding," said the Tibetan spiritual leader.

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Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama. Wikimedia

Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama has written to Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and made a donation towards relief and rescue efforts.

“I am writing to express my sadness at the loss of life and devastation of property,” the letter said, “as well as the hardship caused to so many people due to unprecedented flooding in parts of your state.

Rescuers evacuate people from a flooded area to a safer place in Aluva in the southern state of Kerala. REUTERS
Rescuers evacuate people from a flooded area to a safer place in Aluva in the southern state of Kerala. REUTERS

“I appreciate that every effort is being made to rescue those affected and that relief efforts are underway. As a mark of my solidarity with the people of Kerala, I am making a donation from the Gaden Phodrang Trust of the Dalai Lama towards relief and rescue efforts,” it said.

Also Read: Dalai Lama says That India And China Have Great Potential

Do your part, Donate Here: Paytm, Kerela CM’s Relief Fund

“I offer my condolences to you, to the families who have lost loved ones, and to all affected by the flooding,” said the Tibetan spiritual leader. (IANS)