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"We Tibetans are looking for a legitimate and meaningful autonomy, an arrangement that would enable Tibetans to live within the framework of the People’s Republic of China."

Chinese-Tibetan Friendship Association formed in Japan

February 17, 2009

Monday, February 16, 2009
Office of Tibet, Tokyo

Dharamsala, February 16: Nearly hundred Chinese and Tibetan people in
and around Tokyo gathered jovially on Saturday evening to celebrate the
formation of a “Friendship Association” between the two communities in
the region.

Mr. Kalsang Dhondup, President of the Tibetan Community, in his opening
remark, greeted the gathering and expressed his happiness that the two
communities have “come together to show to the world that we are not
against each other, that we love and respect each other and that we can
live peacefully together”.

Mr. Lhakpa Tshoko, Representative of His Holiness the Dalai Lama for
Japan and East Asia welcomed the formation of the Association and said
that it was “in line with the principle of His Holiness the Dalai Lama,
who has always preached love, compassion, non-violence and universal

Describing the newly founded “Chinese-Tibetan Friendship Association” as
a non-political entity, the Tibetan representative hoped it could
“contribute immensely in clearing many doubts and misunderstanding
between the two communities”.

“It is a friendship association formed at community level and this will
greatly help in promoting peace and stability in China and Tibet,” Mr
Tshoko said.

Dr. Tsewang Nishikura was appointed the president of the association.
Mr. Liu Bao and Lee Komatsu are appointed as its Vice Presidents, and
Mr. Kalsang Dhondup as the General Secretary of the Association.

Dr. Tsewang, while accepting the responsibility, urged the respective
communities to abide by the policy of peace and friendship, and in
promoting better understanding, which he would help send good message to
the people in China and Tibet.

Vice President Mr. Liu Bao expressed great happiness about the
successful formation of the Association. He said that he had been to
Tibet several times and had good many Tibetans as friends. Commending
Tibet’s “unique Buddhist tradition of peace and concept of others before
self”, Bao said Chinese people “have many things to learn from Tibetan”.

In his speech, Bao insisted on the need to have more communication
between the two communities.

`Whatever the Chinese government has done, it represents the
Government’s stand only, which does not represent Chinese people,” Bao
said, and prayed for the success of the Association.

An elderly Chinese man said he was so happy that he wanted to dedicate a
song for the occasion and played harmonica. A group of Tibetan and
Chinese casually performed Tibetan dance together at a corner. A young
Tibetan girl sang a Tibetan song. The performances drew great
appreciation and ovation from the crowd. The gathering concluded with an
announcement to meet again in future.

According to latest Japanese official records, there are some 606, 899
Chinese residing in Japan, forming the largest foreign community in the
country - nearly 30 per cent of the total foreign population. This is
exclusive of some 110,000 Chinese who had taken Japanese citizenship
till date. On the other hand, Tibetan population, including those who
had taken Japanese citizenship, counts to little more than 100 only.
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