Question 1) At the press conference today in China, they are always ready to talk about Dalai Lama's personal well-being, and there is absolutely no rule to talk about Autonomy or real autonomy in future, and there will be no concession on their side. My question is, will Tibetan government in exile resume talk with current Chinese claim on Dalai Lama's personal well-being?
Answer: Our counterparts in Beijing announced very well our position. His Holiness says no personal quarrel with Chinese leadership. As we clearly stated in our press statement, we also made absolutely clear to Chinese leadership even this time that the issue we discuss is issue of Tibetan people, their future, their well-being, and as I said very clearly to the Chinese counterparts, very strongly, over and over again that there is no personal matter that concerns His Holiness, his status, his future that we need to discuss. As a matter of fact for the last nine rounds, even before that, ever since 1979 when we have established direct relation with Chinese government, the issue about His Holiness's personal future and status has never been on the agenda. This is a political rhetoric. And it is very clear also on the Chinese reactions to the specific issues that we have raised, that we are discussing about issue of Tibet. It is for that reason we in fact have pointed out that while there is definitely vast gap upon approach. In fact we have expressed that some of the actions that the Chinese government has taken, including the statements that was issued after the leading groups meeting on the Tibet. That is to some extent reflects some of the concerns that His Holiness the Dalai Lama has expressed. It is very clear that there is no issue that concerns personal well-being of future of His Holiness the Dalai Lama that we are discussing with Chinese government. Your question was "Are we willing to or are we ready to continue to deal with Chinese government?" . Absolutely. They have also conveyed to us repeatedly, during this time also, the importance that they attach to the dialogue process. And we also have conveyed to our Chinese counterparts that His Holiness the Dalai Lama, in fact I have told them very clearly that even though this relation that we have with Chinese government, was the initiated by Deng Xiao Ping in 1979. But ever since it is the efforts of His Holiness that has hastened this relation. Every time it is His Holiness and Tibetan leadership we have made efforts again and again to make sure that this relation is maintained. So we will be willing to continue, and in fact we feel that the only way that the issue of Tibet could be resolved is through direct dialogue between the Chinese government and Tibetan leadership. So this is very clear that we are committed to continue the discussions. However, my colleague Kalsang Gyaltsen and I made it very clear that in orders for us to continue to have such talks, there has to be some progress. The issues are very delegate, very complex, and we have no illusion that the differences could be resolved over night, in another round of talks. It take times and we also must have patience. I think we have demonstrate clearly that do have patience. However, we made very clear that in order for us to continue this dialogue, there has to be some progress. For example, there is very clear from our statements, the Chinese government must sees the baseless accusations against His Holiness, calling him splits. His Holiness has over and over, almost daily bases, has been saying explicitly that looking for solutions to resolve the Tibet problem within framework of PRC, within the constitution of PRC. This made very very clear on those conditions, with those understanding that we continue to remain commitment to continue the process of dialogue.
Answer: I don't understand what do you mean by resume, as far as we are concerned, we are in an engagement, we are in the process of dialogue particularly since 2002. And we are committed to continue this person to person dialogue. Yes, but we have made very clear that in order for us to continue for some fruitful results, the Chinese government has to take some steps such as, as I said again, these baseless accusations against His Holiness, and we told Chinese counterparts very clearly that this brings tremendous discrete to Chinese government. I mean whole world knows that His Holiness is not splits. In fact I think the free world knows His Holiness better than Chinese leadership, unfortunately. And the Chinese people even less because of lack of freedom. So those things are very important, but again I am not saying that as a condition. Because we don't believe in imposing conditions, not doing or lack to be imposed conditions but yes we made very clear that there has to be some tangible stage that will be taken. Meantime we also told Chinese counterparts that we ourselves will thoroughly everything Chinese counterparts said to us, shared with us, conveyed to us, we will take very seriously. We already have reported to His Holiness this morning and to the Kalon Tipa (Tibetan Prime minister). And we will definitely in the next several weeks further study, further analyze what they have conveyed to us, and specially also the important documents that were published after the rather important meeting that was held in Being some weeks back.
Question 3) Generally speaking, this ninth round of talk made some progress or not? At the same time, you mentioned........
Answer: Unfortunately the mediate reaction of our Chinese counterparts on one hand disappointing, on the other hand I am not surprised. Again I don't say as disrespect. I think the system and its function are different from us that less transparency, and we also know that we have no illusions that our counterparts are very competent and very experienced people, but obviously that kind of system decisions are taken very elaborate and very complicated process. So in spite of their initial rather disappointing reaction. As we stated clearly in our statements we told our counterparts just as we will very thoroughly very seriously reflect on what they have conveyed to us on the important documents they have issued, that they also must seriously reflect and report the hierarchy of the suggestions, of very constructive suggestions. What is the real issue, as said earlier the issue is not about the position of His Holiness. In fact His Holiness has made it obviously clear more than once that he has moral historical responsibility to help the Tibetan people, find the solution to their future with Chinese leadership. Once that is accomplished, in fact he made very clear that he won't hold any political office. So our disagreement, our problem is the real situation on the ground and all the Tibetan areas. So therefore we have very sincerely suggested, look what differences we have is , for example, we feel the situation in Tibet is absolutely deteriorating, Tibetan people are unhappy, Tibetan people are suffering. Chinese on the other hand, even this time our Chinese counterparts, all of them, gave us pictures of Tibet that Tibetan people are very happy, that there is no issue of Tibet. In fact, some times they go to extent of saying there is no issue of Tibet. Next you had them holding this press conference, among this press conference talking about issue of Tibet. But anyway what I have offered was that let us together, making efforts to see the real situation. We made very clear, we said "if tomorrow we find that the majority of Tibetan people inside Tibet said that we are happy, His Holiness the Dalai Lama will be the happiest person. He would then definitely tell China that now I am convinced, because together we have been able to certain the true feelings of the Tibetans. And if they are happy, I have no quarrel, so this is one of the things we have suggested not in a confrontational manner, but in a very positive way. But sometimes they have some kind of illusions, because some of the counterparts, who are actually ethnic Tibetan, shared with us their views. One senior person said that he had been to many parts of Tibet in recent months. One of them Nyima Tsering, from Lhasa and has been vice governor for many years and at the moment he is the vice chair of the national people's congress in Lhasa. But I told him very clearly that I have personal respect, because you are both fellow Tibetans. But I said don't think I am being arrogant, but I have been living in exile for the last 50 years, but I can say with confidence that I understand the true feeling of the Tibetans much more and Tibetan leader two of you. I mean these are some of the facts they must accept. So we have meant that very sincere offer to work together and I do suddenly hope that with cool head that Chinese are rational people reflect on it even though initially their reaction was rather disappointing.
Question 4 ) What was Chinese government's reaction to the explanatory note for 'Memorandum'...........?
Answer: The initial reaction from Chinese government was disappointing. Because they felt that all the memorandum is nothing but further elaboration, further reinforcement of what we have stated. And our earlier memo which unfortunately they had outlined rejected. This is how initially they saw it. But as we have tried to highlight some of the issues that we have tried to tackle is not explicitly, without any doubt clarifies some of the concerns, whether genuine or politically motivated, but nevertheless some of the concerns are Chinese government have raised. For example; they said that our memorandum challenges the supremacy of Chinese hierarchy, it challenges the Chinese constitutions, it challenges the law making authorities of National People's Congress, etc. so this is not what we handed to our Chinese counterparts. We have, not just in a superficial manner, but in a very elaborate very detailed manner we showed them exactly what our position is. At the same time we also have pointed out what is the core issue again. The core issue is about the future of the Tibetan people that we also have very explicitly mentioned. Again with cool headedness and with true realities on the ground, as you know you are confronted to the situation on the ground, that I think uncontrollably unmanageable. We made very clear that the only we can find a situation that is beneficial not only to the Tibetans to Chinese friends, to all the nationalities living within the republic of China. Chinese government needs to work with His Holiness, with the cooperation of His Holiness, with the blessing of His Holiness. So again as a part of initial reactions, even taken opportunity of this conference, I would like to urge Chinese leadership to give a serious contribution to the very sincere and very clear note we shared with them.
Question 5 ) You urged Chinese officials not engaging baseless accusation against Dalai Lama, after you come to India, china again objected Dalai Lama's meeting with US president Obama, what is your reaction on that?
Answer: Well, with all respect to Chinese government, I found our Chinese counterparts, Chinese leadership, their statement quite arrogant, which I think very disappointing. Because China is a very important growing power. China has tremendous potential, much more important global role. But sometimes, this is my personal preservation, I was disappointed, I was little worried actually, of the sense of arrogance. Because my hope was china is a ancient nation, like India, with ancient civilization. And I thought China with that ancient civilization would be able to handle this kind of newly end economic and political cloud that she has, and much more mutual manner. So I think some of rectories, including outburst reaction against future meeting with His Holiness and President Obama reflects that which is unfortunate. We made very clear to the Chinese government their issue with us. And we told them very clearly that His Holiness doesn't do this, because he has too much time or he has nothing to do. His Holiness has moral responsibility to the Tibetan people. Till such time Chinese leadership comes to its senses and deals with this situation. His Holiness has moral responsibility to continue to knock the doors wherever he can, to raise the concerns behalf of his people. Yes, I believe, this morning our counterparts raised that issue and they also raised with us. I personally, not because of the that particular meeting, my concern was on the whole of this kind of arrogant attitude which, I think, becoming an . I do hope China would new look again the status, will handle herself, will behave herself in a much more dignified and responsible manner. Not dealing with Tibetan part, but on other issues. If she does that, I think she has tremendous important and positive role to play, which His Holiness the Dalai Lama always very keen China play. His Holiness is one of the few leaders who in fact was encouraging the world leadership, except china, to the forward. I remember very clearly even in early 70s, when many of the western nations not even touch with China, like the expression "at foot pool". His Holiness used to tell them can't ignore one fourth of the world population. You need to bring china into the font. So she now is in the front and we do hope she will behave much more dignified manner. I am sure this is just kind of person's face, the growth of this nation.
Question 6 ) After last meeting and talk, you said that Chinese counterparts rejected the memorandum and there was deadlock. Now you say that being able to continue unless you see productive signs, my question is was there productive signs from the Chinese side since the last talk? Second question is, you mentioned you met His Holiness the Dalai Lama this morning, what is his reaction to it?
Answer: First of all, I didn't say to discontinue our dialogue process unless this this happens. What we have told them very clearly is for the this person to person dialogue, when you refer to that, we refer very specifically regarding the in 2002, which Kalsang Gyaltsen and I have been holding on behalf of His Holiness. Now in order for this process to be able to continue that there has to be some tangible moves such as, as said clearly earlier, they must stop baseless accusations. We told them very candidly this makes china look very silly. Some of the accusations, I believe, this morning also went on and on for half hour or something, many of the leaders speaking. I believe some of the criticisms they have leveled against His Holiness, I think to be very frankly kidish, . for example, they made big fuss about His Holiness "I am son of India". I think this is very kidish and shows lack of understanding of cultural values we hold. They have also raised this, His Holiness "I think my mind is. Why he says that is the very proud of the Nalanda tradition of Buddhism. First of all, you see we Tibetans are very proud of our Buddhist cultural heritage. And especially His Holiness feels that we are caster den of this great tradition that regards universal Nalanda. Yes, His Holiness always say it. Our mind or thought process, philosophy is very much. On the other hand, of course, you see we have lived in this country for 50 years, it is a fact.
Edited by Max French, The Tibet Post International