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"As long as human rights are violated, there can be no foundation for peace. How can peace grow where speaking the truth is itself a crime?"

McCain counters Obama tour to Europe with Dalai Lama meeting

July 27, 2008

Elana Schor
Guardian (UK)
July 25, 2008

While Barack Obama meets Nicolas Sarkozy and Gordon Brown today, his
Republican presidential rival plans to vie for attention by meeting
the Dalai Lama.

McCain will meet the exiled spiritual leader, whom he called a "role
model and hero", after a speech by the Dalai Lama at a Tibet
conference in Aspen, Colorado.

The Republican presidential nominee was among the first to say he
would boycott the Olympics opening ceremonies next month in Beijing
after China launched a bloody crackdown on Tibetan independence
activists. Obama later echoed McCain, although they did not convince
George Bush to change his mind on attending the Olympics opening ceremony.

The meeting with the Dalai Lama could allow McCain to project
strength on foreign policy by chastising China for its violent
presence in Tibet, an effective counter-attack to Obama's
high-profile foreign tour.

The Tibetan leader wrote to McCain in March, thanking him for the
"concern you have shown regarding the sad turn of events in Tibet and
for your efforts to persuade the Chinese authorities to exercise restraint".
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