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Tibet's int to be part of PRC if 'meaningful autonomy' given

January 20, 2009

New Delhi, Jan 18, 2009 (PTI) The Dalai Lama today said that if China gave "meaningful autonomy" to Tibet, it will be in the interest of the Himalayan region to be a part of the communist nation.
"If we are given meaningful autonomy, it is in Tibet's interest to be a part of People's Republic of China,"Dalai Lama said while addressing a gathering here.
Dalai Lama said the"realistic approach"in modern times was to be part of group of nations such as the European Union, which has been very successful.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister of the Tibetan Government-in-exile Samdhong Rimpoche said it has not received any response from China to its request for autonomy presented by the Dalai Lama's envoys two months ago.
In the memo given to the Chinese, the Dalai Lama had demanded"meaningful autonomy"for Tibet.
"It (meaningful autonomy) is intended to ensure the protection of the culture and the identity of minority nationalities by powering them to become the masters of their own affairs,"the Dalai Lama said in his request.
On the need for preserving the Tibetan heritage and culture, Dalai Lama said it was his priority as the Chinese want to"eliminate"it to do away with the source of Tibetan separatist threat.
"Ten years ago, there was a Chinese official in charge of the Tibetan Autonomous Region (TAR), who in one Communist Party meeting said the ultimate source of threat in Tibet came from Tibetan culture and they tried to eliminate it. Our priority has been to preserve our ancient culture, heritage and traditions,"he said.
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