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Tibet exile minister 'not encouraged' by China talks

July 4, 2008

July 4, 2008

Tibet's foreign minister in exile yesterday said the latest round of
talks between the Dalai Lama's envoys and China so far did not look

"Judging from some of the statements made by the Chinese leadership,
particularly the office for the autonomous region of Tibet, what they
have to say about the Tibetan situation is not very encouraging,"
Kesang Yangkyi Takla told a news conference in Tokyo.

While saying she had not been briefed on the talks in Beijing, the
foreign minister in exile said it "doesn't sound like the authorities
are willing to listen to the suffering of Tibetan people".

"That said, we have to see what the real outcome of the seventh round
of meetings is going to be," said Takla, part of the Tibetan
government in exile in the northern Indian hill station of Dharamshala.

China has said little about the talks, which opened three months
after major protests in Tibet against Beijing's controversial rule
over the predominantly Buddhist Himalayan region.

The crackdown on the unrest, which spread to neighbouring
Tibetan-populated areas of western China, sparked global
demonstrations that marred the month-long international journey of
the Beijing Olympic torch.

Asked what was on the agenda for the Beijing talks, Takla said: "We
all know what the general outline is - Tibet has problems, there's a
violation of human rights, the issue of Tibet needs to be solved."

"We are willing to solve it in the middle-way approach by taking into
consideration the interests of both China and Tibetan people," she said.

"Now I think the ball is very much in China's court, and I think this
is acknowledged by the world community," she said.

She was in Tokyo for a two-day conference of Tibet supporters, who
included Japanese opposition lawmakers.

The conference approved a resolution asking Japan to raise Tibet when
it hosts the Group of Eight industrial powers' summit next week, to
which Chinese President Hu Jintao has been invited.

A senior Japanese foreign ministry official said there were no
concrete plans to discuss Tibet but that leaders may raise it.
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