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PM risks diplomatic row with China due to Dalai Lama meeting

May 20, 2009

The Copenhagen Post (Denmark)
May 19, 2009

Copenhagen -- Despite a diplomatic warning that
meeting with the Dalai Lama will not be conducive
to preserving Denmark's good relations with
China, the PM will meet the Tibetan religious leader

China has previously warned countries’ leaders
against meeting with the Dalai Lama, but Prime
Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen has chosen to
welcome the Tibetan spiritual leader to
Marienborg Palace when he visits Denmark next Friday.

Rasmussen will meet with the Dalai Lama at
Marienborg Palace, north of Copenhagen, where
foreign VIPs are traditionally received by the
prime minister. The Dalai Lama is making a world
tour in connection with the 50th anniversary of
his exile into India after the Chinese occupation of Tibet.

Yang Jiechi, the Chinese foreign minister, said
in March that heads of state ‘wishing to preserve
or develop their relationship with China’ should
not meet with the Dalai Lama during the tour.

But Rasmussen said he will do as his predecessor,
Anders Fogh Rasmussen, did, despite the sharpened
tone of China’s government since last year’s protests by Tibetan monks.

The spiritual leader will also speak at Bella
Center in the city’s Amager district on 30-31 May.
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