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05may20101Dharamshala: Over one thousand people, primarily children, gathered at the TCV School in Dharamshala yesterday to witness their spiritual leader, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, honor and commend Richard Moore, whom HH described as "a living example of peace" and "my hero". Moore, a 48 year-old Irishman, was blinded at the age of 10 by a rubber bullet fired by a British soldier. Remarkably, Moore was accompanied yesterday by Charles - the British soldier who shot him. The two met in 2006 and became friends. Moore has no anger or bitterness towards the man who blinded him, and it is this exemplary attitude, a noble paradigm of kindness and compassion, that "deeply touched" His Holiness.

In 1996 Moore founded ‘Children in Crossfire', a charitable organization working to protect and promote the rights of some of the world's most vulnerable children, particularly those who have been caught in the crossfire of poverty. Moore captivated the audience yesterday, speaking of his personal tragedy and revealing that in spite of such a debilitating trauma at a very young age, he has "learned to see life in a different way." Indeed, through the efforts of ‘Children in Crossfire' in developing countries worldwide, young children and their communities have been empowered to build a better future, a noteworthy illustration of the triumph of the human spirit to overcome adversity.

As the world's foremost advocate of the message of compassion, the Tibetan Leader initiated the gathering after meeting Moore in 2007 when HH spoke at Children in Crossfire's 10th Anniversary Conference. HH the Dalai Lama found inspiration in Moore, and invited him to visit Dharamshala, confident that future generations would draw inspiration from the Irishman's admirable spirit of forgiveness and compassion. His Holiness honored Richard with a citation, which he read to the gathering, and a Khata, a traditional well-wishing scarf. The Tibetan leader expressed his immense appreciation towards Moore, thanking him several times for visiting Dharamshala and adding that people like Richard Moore are truly deserving of The Nobel Peace Prize.

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