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China rebuts Dalai Lama's claim as "legal representative" of Tibetans

February 2, 2010

Xinhua (People's Republic of China)
February 2, 2010

BEIJING, Feb. 2 (Xinhua) -- A Chinese central
government official Tuesday dismissed the Dalai
Lama's claim as being "legal representative" of Tibetans.

"The Chinese government and the government of
Tibet Autonomous Region under its leadership are
the only representatives of Tibetans," Zhu
Weiqun, executive vice minister of the United
Front Work Department (UFWD) of the Communist
Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, said in a
statement to media at a press conference.

Du Qinglin, vice chairman of the National
Committee of the Chinese People's Political
Consultative Conference, met with the Dalai
Lama's private representatives, Lodi Gyari and
Kelsang Gyaltsen, last week in Beijing. Other
officials, including Zhu himself, held a whole day's talk with them.

At the talks, the Dalai Lama's private
representatives refused to "revise a single word"
in the Memorandum for All Tibetans to Enjoy
Genuine Autonomy which they presented at the
previous talk, nor make any concession, Zhu said.

They insisted that the Dalai Lama is "a legal
representative of broad Tibetans" and would like
to talk with the central government about "Tibet
issue" and "the welfare of 6 million Tibetans," he said.

The former local government of Tibet, which
launched an armed rebellion on March 10 of 1959,
had been dismissed on March 28, 1959.

"The so-called 'Tibet government-in-exile'
composed of those who defected to India and
gathered there absolutely violates China's laws," Zhu said.

The private representatives "have no legal status
to discuss with us the affairs about Tibet
Autonomous Region," Zhu said. "They are only the
Dalai Lama's private representatives, so they can
only talk about the prospect of the Dalai Lama,
at most, the prospects of a small party around him."

The talks were suspended for more than a year
after the meeting in November 2008.

"The major reason lies in the fact that they (the
Dalai Lama side) openly declared to cease the
contacts and talks with the Central authorities," Zhu said.

He suggested that the Dalai Lama side correct
their mistakes rather than repeat the contents in
the Memorandum, which the central government had
rebutted at the previous talks, and use tricks to "explain" it.
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