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"We Tibetans are looking for a legitimate and meaningful autonomy, an arrangement that would enable Tibetans to live within the framework of the People’s Republic of China."

China says Dalai Lama wants to reintroduce serfdom

December 12, 2007

BEIJING Tue Dec 11, 2007 (Reuters) - China dismissed accusations that
religious repression was increasing in Chinese-ruled Tibet, and accused
its spiritual leader, the exiled Dalai Lama, on Tuesday of wanting to
reintroduce serfdom to the Himalayan region.

London-based Tibet Watch said on Monday China had started building
police stations close to, or even in, monasteries, limiting the number
of monks or nuns and making them take exams to prove their loyalty to China.

Although visitors to Tibet may notice rebuilt and restored monasteries
and monks and nuns apparently able to practice Buddhism freely, it was
only for show, the group said.

China has ruled Tibet with an iron hand since Communist troops invaded
the region in 1950. But many in Tibet still pledge loyalty to the Nobel
Peace Prize-winning Dalai Lama, despite Beijing's condemnation of him as
a "splittist" and traitor for staging a failed uprising and fleeing to
India in 1959.

China regularly defends its rule in Tibet, saying the Communists ended
centuries of serfdom and brought prosperity to the underdeveloped region.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang told a news conference he
thought so little of the Tibet Watch report he would not comment on it
directly.

"Their lies are too many," he said, adding that the Dalai Lama wanted to
restore what he called "a terrible dark system of serfdom" on the
Tibetan people.

"The Dalai clique wants to revive its dream of a serf system," Qin said.

"No matter what visage he appears in, no matter what he says, his
unspoken words, his essence is not to recognize Tibet as part of China."

(Reporting by Chris Buckley; writing by Nick Mackie and Roger Crab)
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