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"I believe that to meet the challenges of our times, human beings will have to develop a greater sense of universal responsibility. It is the foundation for world peace."

'Forget politics, just rejoice'

February 27, 2009

By Xie Yu

(China Daily)
Updated: 2009-02-26 07:42
China Daily is an official publication of the People's Republic of China

The celebration of the Tibetan New Year should not be tied with
political issues, Tibet experts in the mainland said yesterday.

Over the past fortnight, the Dalai Lama and his exiled government have
been urging Tibetans not to celebrate the New Year, warning them of
tension and conflicts in the near future, Lhorong Dradul, a researcher
at the China Tibetology Research Center said at a press salon in Beijing.

"I called home (Tibet) this morning and learned many of my relatives
were making fried fruit, a traditional snack for the Tibetan New Year.
The atmosphere is good. And people should not allow some politicians to
take advantage of the celebrations to meet their own personal
interests," he said.

Celebrating the New Year is the Tibetan way to bid farewell to old and
bad things, according to Lhorong. "As far as I know, most of the
Tibetans are happily celebrating the New Year. It's private, and should
not be tied to politics," he said.

Topics ranging from the reasons of last year's March 14 riot to the
latest Dalai-call for not celebrating the New year were discussed at the
nearly two-hour long salon, held at the All-China Journalists'
Association office in the capital.

More than 70 domestic and international journalists attended the session.

There were also discussions on the economic development of Tibet, ways
to protect Tibet's ethnic culture, and opening up policies in the region.

Niklas, a Swedish correspondent, felt the salon helped him learn more
about Tibet, especially from an academic perspective.

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