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05 november 2011 002Dharamshala: Yesterday, at a press conference in Sendai, Japan, His Holiness, the Dalai Lama urged China to review and repair its 60 year Tibet policy, adding that "using force is counter-producive and will not bring peace and stability".

On his 8th day in Japan, the spiritual leader of Tibet answered various Japanese media queries at a press conference in Sendai, where he is visiting in order to offer his condolences to those affected by the massive tsunami that hit in April of this year. The conference was organized by the Buddhist Associations of Sendai & Ishinomaki, and the press club of Sendai.

The Dalai Lama asked that the press question the Prime Minister of Tibet regarding the self-immolations- a post designated to Lobsang Sangay in July, following His Holiness' resignation from being the political leader of Tibet. Responding to questions regarding the self-immolations, the 11th one having taken place 2 days ago, the Dalai Lama said, "Speaking as a regular Tibetan, these incidents are very, very sad. The leadership in Beijing should look into the ultimate cause of these tragic incidents. These Tibetans have faced a tremendous, desperate situation, otherwise nobody would commit such drastic acts".

"In 2009, one senior party leader in Guangdong said the Central authority should review the policy on minority nationalities...this approach is right, scientific, realistic". He added, "PM Wen Jiabao has said publicly that China needs political reform and a western style of democracy. The Chinese leadership should seriously think about it; the time of using force is outdated".

In reference to media coverage of human rights violations in Tibet, His Holiness said, "in the 1970s and 80s, the human rights violations in the Soviet Union received lots of publicity from the west, not less attention is being paid when serious human rights violations are taking place in Asia. There should be no basis of discrimination on the human rights issue".

Indeed, the international media has been rife with reports of  repression, cultural genocide and the resultant self-immolations taking place in Eastern Tibet. Lobbyists have organized world-wide campaigns, protests, demonstrations and stressed their governments to take a more assertive stance on the Tibet issue. But aside from voicing their support and sympathy towards Tibet, no definitive action has taken place on the part of the Western countries, who still continue to tiptoe around economic muscle-man, China.

In a press statement released by the CTA on November 3, they reiterated an appeal to the Chinese government  to allow independent, fact-finding delegation in Kirti, Karze and Tawo region to look into the causes of the self-immolations and address the concerns of the people of those regions.

"We also seek immediate intervention of United Nations and the International community to make sure that China undertake measures that will fulfill the aspirations of the Tibetan people to grant fundamental human rights to the Tibetan people and resolve the issue of Tibet through dialogue for a lasting solution".

The primary purpose of the Dalai Lama's current visit to Japan is to spend time offering prayers and condolences to the people affected by the earthquake and tsunami, and an imminent radio-active leak. Tomorrow, he will conduct a prayer session at Ishinomaki for the same.

He told reporters it was his moral obligation, as a Buddhist and as a friend of Japan, to visit the calamity-ravaged country and share in their sadness.

On being asked about his message to the people in Sendai, he imparted, "The tragedy had already happened- it is of no use to feel dejected by it. Instead of this, the tragedy should be translated into enthusiasm and rebuild your region".

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