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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?"

Dalai Lama: Tibet needs China

December 7, 2008

BRUSSELS, Published: Dec. 6, 2008 (UPI) -- The Dalai Lama told the European Parliament he believes it is in Tibet's interest to remain part of China.
The Tibetan Buddhist leader addressed the parliament Thursday during a European tour. He said the Chinese have brought modernization and some economic prosperity to the 6 million Tibetans, the European Observer reported.
But he also criticized China on human rights and said Tibet needs autonomy.
"Ours is not a separatist movement. It is in our own interest to remain in a big nation like China," he said. "We are not splittists."
The Dalai Lama, born Tenzin Gyatso, is believed by his followers to be the reincarnation of his 13 predecessors. Before the Chinese takeover of Tibet in 1950, the Dalai Lama was the country's spiritual and temporal ruler, although the current one did not exercise that power because he was enthroned after the Chinese arrived. He has been living in exile since 1950.
China, in an article on the government news agency Xinhua, accused the Dalai Lama of trying to restore a theocracy in Tibet. There have also been protests in China because French President Nicolas Sarkozy plans to meet the Dalai Lama this weekend in Poland.
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