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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

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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Tibetan Communities, Like All Faith Communities, Should Be Able to Select, Educate and Venerate Their Religious Leaders Without Government Interference

Earlier this month at the 3rd Special General meeting in Dharamshala, Tibetans from far and wide underscored the right of the Dalai Lama

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Tibetan Communities
Tibetan Communities, Buddhists and all other faith communities should be able to select, educate and venerate their religious leader without government interference. Pixabay

By Vijyender Sharma

Dharamshala—- Hitting back at China for its “meritless” claim that the Dalai Lama’s succession must comply with Chinese laws and regulations, the United States  reiterated that Tibetan communities, like all faith communities, should be able to select, educate, & venerate their religious leaders without government interference.

Alice Wells, Acting Assistant Secretary of State, Bureau of South and Central Asia, said in a tweeted “The Chinese Communist Party claim that Dalai Lama’s succession “must comply with Chinese laws and regulations” is meritless. Tibetan communities, like all faith communities, should be able to select, educate, & venerate their religious leaders without government interference. AGW”.

She also said Ambassador Sam Brownbacks’ meeting with  Dalai Lama in Dharamsala emphasised the enduring US support for the Tibetan people, and also appr

Tibetan
Alice Wells, Acting Assistant Secretary of State, Bureau of South and Central Asia, said in a tweeted “The Chinese Communist Party claim that Dalai Lama’s succession “must comply with Chinese laws and regulations” is meritless. Tibetan communities, like all faith communities, should be able to select, educate, & venerate their religious leaders without government interference. AGW”.

Ambassador’s meeting with Dalai Lama in Dharamsala emphasizes enduring U.S. support for the Tibetan people. India has greatly supported Tibetan religious freedom, and the U.S. stands in deep admiration of India’s extraordinary generosity,” she tweeted.

The US Ambassador at large for International Religious Freedom, His Excellency Samuel D. Brownback was in Dharamshala last week at the special invitation of Central Tibetan Administration  President Dr Lobsang Sangay. The Ambassador’s presence here at the seat of Central Tibetan Administration gestured the strongest political support for the Tibetan people, particularly for Tibetan religious freedom. 

After more than hour-long meeting with His Holiness the Dalai Lama and CTA President Dr Lobsang Sangay, he said the US stance on the reincarnation of the Dalai Lama is in accord with the resolutions passed at the third Special General meeting of Tibetan people.

Tibetan
Ambassador Sam Brownbacks’ meeting with  Dalai Lama in Dharamsala emphasised the enduring US support for the Tibetan Communities.

“Earlier this month at the 3rd Special General meeting in Dharamshala, Tibetans from far and wide underscored the right of the Dalai Lama and other Tibetan leaders to identify and recognise a successor to His Holiness and rejected Chinese authorities to interfere in this process. Let me be clear! The United States shares that view,” said Ambassador Brownback while officiating the inauguration of the First International Conference on Tibetan Performing Arts at Dharamshala.

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“Tibetan Buddhists and all other faith communities should be able to select, educate and venerate their religious leader without government interference. the selection effects not just Tibetans but for the global Buddhist community. Decision regarding the selection of Tibetan Buddhist leaders rests with the Dalai Lama, Tibetan Buddhist leaders and people of Tibet. Period!”