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President Obama urges Chinese President Xi Jinping to engage the Dalai Lama

September 28, 2015

Central Tibetan Administration, September 26, 2015 - US President Barack Obama yesterday urged Chinese President Xi Jinping, who is currently on his first official visit to the US, to engage in dialogue with His Holiness the Dalai Lama or his representatives.

Addressing a joint press conference with the Chinese President at the White House on 25 September, the US President said, “Even as we recognise Tibet as part of the People’s Republic of China, we continue to encourage the Chinese authorities to preserve the religious and cultural identity of the Tibetan people and to engage with the Dalai Lama or his representatives.”

President Obama reaffirmed the US government’s unwavering support for the human rights and fundamental freedoms of all people, including freedom of assembly and expression, freedom of the press and freedom of religion.

He also added that the Chinese government’s prevention of journalists, lawyers, NGOs and civil society groups from operating freely, or closing churches and denying ethnic minorities equal treatment are problematic and hinders China and the Chinese people from realising its full potential.

It is not the first time that the US President has urged the Chinese leadership to engage in dialogue with His Holiness the Dalai Lama or his representatives. President Obama has earlier urged former Chinese President Hu Jintao, during their meeting in 2011, to engage in constructive dialogue with representatives of His Holiness the Dalai Lama for a resolution on the Tibet issue.

President Obama has also repeatedly reiterated his support for the Middle Way Approach of the Central Tibetan Administration during his meetings with His Holiness the Dalai Lama in February 2010, July 2011 and February 2014.

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