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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?"

Chinese seek to ban Dalai Lama from NZ

April 3, 2009

By Lincoln Tan
The New Zealand Herald
April 2, 2009

An umbrella group representing 28 local Chinese
organisations wants the Government to follow
South Africa's lead in refusing to grant the Dalai Lama a visa to visit.

The 73-year-old Tibetan exiled spiritual leader
is scheduled to visit Auckland on December 6. He
will speak at the Vector Arena and plans to meet Prime Minister John Key.

Mr Key has said he will meet the Buddhist leader
when he comes, calling the Dalai Lama a "significant visitor".

The Dalai Lama was to visit South Africa last
week after being invited to attend a peace
conference of Nobel laureates, but was refused a visa.

The United Chinese Association of New Zealand
will be writing to the Prime Minister and
Immigration Minister requesting that New Zealand does the same.

The South African government admitted its
decision was taken to avoid harming relations with China.

"The Dalai Lama is just a stirrer and everywhere
he goes, he spreads lies and destroys
relationships," said association chairman Steven Wong.

The chairman of the Dalai Lama Visit Trust,
Thuten Kesang, said he was disgusted at the
Chinese attempts to put pressure on New Zealand, and said they could backfire.

"The Chinese must learn they cannot dictate who
we can and cannot welcome into our country," Mr Kesang said.
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