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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?"

Tibet tour 'shouldn't be stage managed': Smith

March 28, 2008

Scopical, Australia
28 March 2008

The Foreign Minister says he hopes that the planned tour of Tibet by
that of Australian representatives is not stage managed by the Chinese.

Australian foreign officials will be among a group of external
Government diplomats to tour parts of Tibet, following from widespread
violence and protest in the region.

Foreign Minister Stephen Smith said that he hoped the event was not
staged managed, and that attendees were given a real look into Tibet.

"We hope it is not stage managed... [we want] to have a look at how
things are on the ground, we certainly think that it is a step in the
right direction," Mr Smith told Sky News.

While the Government has not condemned the actions of China against the
Tibetan people, Mr Smith said the Government had made it clear it wanted
to see restraint.

"We've been making the point generally so far as Tibet is concerned,
firstly that they should be acting with restraint," he said.

Mr Smith said that China should also begin discussions with the Tibetan
people, and with their spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama.

"You've got to have a sensible dialogue with them... we think it is
within Chins's interests to open up," he said.
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