His Holiness the Dalai Lama and late President Vaclav Havel of the Czech Republic. Photo: file

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Dharamshala — "I think that the Czech Republic should maintain the trend that is interested in human rights observance in the world," Marek Benda, politician in the lower house of Czech Parliament said in his announcement of his Tibet Friends group in Parliament.
Czech politician Marek Benda, the Civil Democrat (ODS) deputy has announced the formation of an unofficial Tibet's friends group in the Chamber of Deputies, the lower house of Czech parliament. The group is apparently an attempt to stress human rights observance and organize meetings of the Tibetan government-in-exile with Czech lawmakers. "I think that the Czech Republic should maintain the trend that is interested in human rights observance in the world," Benda said. "Tibetans are poor people, they are culturally oppressed and it is good that someone should pay attention to this without saying that they should be separated from China, while they themselves do not want this," Benda said. However, the group will not work officially, he added. "Such groups of friends can only exist with the countries we recognise," Benda said. "It may be a group of deputies or senators who have a hearty relationship with Tibet and its people," he added. The group is to cooperate with non-governmental organizations that are active in human rights observance, receive the visits by the Tibetan government-in-exile and react publicly to the information on what is going on in Tibet. Late Czech president Vaclav Havel (1993-2003) was a friend of His Holiness the Dalai Lama who repeatedly visited the international conference Forum 2000 in Prague that Havel founded.

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