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Tibetan PM to attend US Congressional Gold Medal Ceremony and raise Tibetan resettlement plan

October 12, 2007

Phayul[Monday, October 08, 2007 14:45]
By Phurbu Thinley

Dharamsala, October 8: Tibetan Prime Minister [Tib: Kalon Tripa] Prof.
Samdhong Rinpoche will attend the ceremony to bestow the US
Congressional Gold Medal, the country’s highest civilian honour, on His
Holiness the Dalai Lama, on October 17 in the US Capitol Rotunda.

The event will also be the first time that a sitting US President will
appear with the Dalai Lama in a public event.

President George W. Bush will present the Congressional Gold Medal to
the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet.

According to the official website of the Tibetan Government-in-Exile,
Kalon Tripa Samdhong Rinpoche will leave Dharamsala, the seat of the
exile Government, Tuesday this week for a two-week visit to the United
States.

On October 12, a day after arriving in US, Kalon Tripa will meet
officials of the State Department in Washington to discuss the issue of
“Tibetan settlement revitalisation plan” according to Tibet.net.
Officials from International Campaign of Tibet (ICT) and Tibet Fund are
also expected to attend the meeting.

As part of the visit, Kalon Tripa will address a conference of Tibetan
university students in New York and give a keynote lecture on the future
of Tibetan movement and the role of youth on 13 October. Kalon Tripa
will engage in other important meetings in Washington DC from October 14
to 16.

On 17 October, Kalon Tripa will attend the historic ceremony to honour
the Congressional Gold Medal on His Holiness.

The US House of Representatives and the Senate passed a bill on 13
September last year to award the congressional gold medal to His
Holiness, in recognition in recognition of the Dalai Lama's
contributions to peace, non-violence, human rights and religious
understanding.

According to ICT’s recent report, following the ceremony, “there will be
a celebration with remarks from the Dalai Lama on the West Lawn of the
Capitol which is free and open to the public. It is believed to be the
first time in the 200-year history of the honor that the West Lawn will
be used for a Congressional Gold Medal celebration.”

Thousands of Tibetans and Tibetan friends are expected to gather at the
Capitol on October 17 to mark one of the most significant international
tributes to the exiled Tibetan leader since the Nobel Peace Prize was
awarded to him in 1989.

Last week, during its second annual session, Tibetan
Parliament-in-Exile, also based in Dharamsala, passed a unanimous
resolution to mark coming October 17 with official function and mass
public celebration events. Large scale public celebrations are to take
place in Tibetan communities around the world in jubilation of the occasion.

Prime Minister Samdhong Rinpoche will address the Tibetan community in
Washington, DC later in the day on October 17.

On return to India, Kalon Tripa will give keynote Dharampal memorial
lecture organised by the Society for Integrated Development of Himalaya
(SIDH) in New Delhi on 23 October.

Kalon Tripa will finally return to Dharamsala on October 24.

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