The president of the Tibet Group Senator-Jean Francois Humbert, along with six other senators received the Tibetan political leader Dr Sangay as well as special representative of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to Europe- Mr Kelsang Gyaltsen, at the senate; where a dinner reception was held in their honour.
Expressing his happiness in receiving him as a representative of the entire Tibetan people, Senator Jean Francois Humbert welcomed the Sikyong to the senate. He also informed the Sikyong about the recent work of the Tibet Group, particularly their successful work in adopting a resolution in favour of Tibet in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the European Committee.
Dr Sangay thanked the Senators for attending; he highlighted the significance of this encounter due to the French peoples belief and faith in the fundamental principles of liberty, equality and brotherhood.
Underlining the similarities between these beliefs and those of the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA), he said that for decades they have worked on the principals of non-violence and democracy, therefore it is the free world, including France, who must stand up to their principles and values by supporting the just cause of Tibet.
The Sikyong concluded by calling attention to two important points. Firstly, reiterating the CTA’s consistent position of the discouragement of any drastic action, he said that while fully supporting the aspirations of those Tibetans inside Tibet, they do not encourage self immolations.
Secondly, that the CTA’s middle way approach means that they are seeking a mutually beneficial way to solve this situation. They do not look for separation, but genuine autonomy for the Tibetan people, as enshrined in the constitution of the People’s Republic of China.
Many questions were posed by the senators on the issue of Tibet, which the Sikyong answered.
On April 18 he shall address Tibetan community members, as well as meet with the members of the Tibet Group, in the National Assembly, in the French lower house.
Hundreds of Tibetans came to Gare du Nord railway station in traditional dress to welcome the Sikyong in accordance to grand tradition.