Tibetan monk Lobsang Tsundu, who was arrested in 2008 for his involvement in the Tibetan uprising, has been sentenced to ten years in Chushul prison, near Lhasa.

Tsundu was born in Kyigudo, Kham, in 1965. His father is Lobsgang Shirab and his mother is Dolkar Tsetso. As a child, he attended Ranga monastery and later moved to Drepong monastery near Lhasa.

In 1996, Tsundu moved to south India to study at Drepong's mirror monastery there, and then returned to Tibet.

Many monks from Drepong monastery Tibet participated in the 2008 uprising, and Tsundu was arrested, kept in a detention centre and badly tortured - as witnessed by other prisoners.

Tsundu remained stalwart in his opinions, and was punished for expressing them to prison staff, leading to serious health problems.

Dharamshala: India: The spiritual leader of Tibet, His Holiness the Dalai Lama had been invited to South Africa by a number of universities and organizations including Stellenbosch University, the Tutu Centre and the Mahatma Gandhi Trust to give public talks, deliver Bishop Tutu's 80th Birth Anniversary Inaugural Lecture and to receive the Mahatma Gandhi International Award for Peace and Reconciliation.

His Holiness was scheduled to visit South Africa 6th - 14th October 2011. Visa applications for him and his entourage were submitted to the South African High Commission in New Delhi at the end of August and original passports were submitted on 20th September, over two weeks ago.

Since the South African government seems to find it inconvenient to issue a visa to His Holiness the Dalai Lama, His Holiness has decided to call off this visit to South Africa.

His Holiness travels the world to promote human values, religious harmony, world peace, and compassion: principles that form the core of his communications and interactions everywhere. Therefore, His Holiness does not wish to be the subject of anyone's inconvenience whether they are individuals or governments. He particularly regrets the inconvenience caused to his hosts and the many members of the South African public who were keenly waiting to receive him.

Dharamshala: A five member Italian delegation visited the Central Tibetan Administration and the Tibetan Parliament in Exile from 30th September to 3rd October.

During their visit, they attended and observed the last session of the 15th Tibetan Parliament in Exile on 1st October and had an exclusive audience with His Holiness the Dalai Lama at his private office.

In the afternoon, they visited the Tibetan Children village school at upper Dharamsala and took a detour of the school campus. They also visited the Tibetan Reception Center later that afternoon.

A farewell dinner with the members of the standing committee of the Tibetan Parliament in Exile was hosted for them by the Tibetan parliamentary secretariat at the Gangkyi staff mess on the 2nd of October.

The delegation includes Mr Gianni Vernetti, MP, former secretary of state for foreign affairs, Coordinator of the "Parliamentary Initiative for Democracy In China" as well as Mrs Barbara Contini, MP , Mr Luciano Nobili, MP , Mr Ugo Papi, Secretary general of the "Parliamentary initiative for democracy in China" and Mr Santu Lama Ritar, member of the Italian Tibetan community, advisor of the "Parliamentary Initiative for Democracy in China".

Dharamshala, India: In a letter to the Chief Minister of Orissa dated 29 September, the spiritual leader of Tibet, His Holiness the Dalai Lama wrote:

"I am saddened to know that some of the worst floods ever seen in Orissa have resulted in the loss of many lives and a great deal of property, wreaking havoc on millions of people in your state.

"As a token of my sympathy and concern for this disaster, I am making a donation of Rs. 10 lakhs (Ten lakh rupees) from The Dalai Lama Trust to support the relief work. I understand that a team of volunteers from the Tibetan Settlement in Chandragiri, Ganjam District is also on its way to give help in the flood affected areas."

According to officials, the floods have affected more than 2.1 million people in 3,128 villages. More than 80 people have died in flood-related incidents, and some areas have been cut off by rising waters.

The state government said 368 relief camps and free kitchen centres have been opened in the affected areas and food relief provided to nearly 200,000 people so far. The number of dwelling houses damaged by the floods was more than 31,000, the official said.

TaipeiI, Taiwan: The spiritual leader of Tibetm His Holiness the Dalai Lama's Representative to Taiwan on Thursday delivered a talk on the issue of Tibet to hundreds of students and teachers, including 30 students from the mainland China, at the invitation of National Tsing Hua University in Taiwan.

The talk titled "Prominent individuals affect on China" was organised by Mr Wang Dan, who was one the prominent student leaders in the Tienanmen Square protests of 1989 and he is also leader of the Chinese Democracy Movement. Mr Wang holds PhD degree in history from Harvard University and currently teaching history of the People's Republic of China at National Tsing Hua University of Taiwan.

During his forty minutes talk Mr Dawa Tsering, His Holiness the Dalai Lama's representative, spoke about His Holiness the Dalai Lama and history, culture and religion of Tibet. He also took many questions, particularly those questions raised by the students from the mainland China. The whole programme lasted for two hours and forty minutes and Mr Dawa Tsering had a good opportunity to interact with the Chinese students.

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