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"As long as human rights are violated, there can be no foundation for peace. How can peace grow where speaking the truth is itself a crime?"

Dalai Lama losing hope for Tibet autonomy - aide

October 27, 2008

October 26, 2008

NEW DELHI (Reuters) -- The Dalai Lama has lost hope of reaching an
agreement with Beijing over Tibetan autonomy under Chinese rule, but
is not going into retirement, a senior aide said on Sunday.

"Because of lack of response from Chinese we have to be realistic,
there is no hope", Tenzin Taklha told Reuters.

"His holiness does not want to become a hindrance to the Tibetan
issue, and therefore has sent a letter to the parliament regarding
what options he has".

The Tibetan spiritual leader has called for a special meeting of
Tibetan exiles in the second week of November to discuss the future
of the Tibetan movement.

His candour is seen as a vindication for the many exiled Tibetans who
say his conciliatory "middle way" approach to seeking greater
autonomy has not worked.

"I think the statement by his Holiness is an eye opener for the
Tibetan people", Tsewang Rigzin, the president of the
pro-independence Tibetan Youth Congress told Reuters.

"We are not against the middle way approach of his Holiness, the fact
is that China is not sincere and has never been sincere in talking
about the middle way".

Taklha denied speculation that the 73-year-old Dalai Lama was going
into retirement.

Karma Cheophel, the speaker for the Tibetan government-in-exile,
earlier said the Dalai Lama had "hinted he is now on full
retirement", sparking some rumours in the local media.

The Dalai Lama gave his first public address on Saturday since
undergoing gallstone surgery, in Dharamsala, the seat of the exiled government.

Beijing vilifies the Dalai Lama as a traitor and earlier this year
accused him of orchestrating a deadly wave of unrest in Tibet ahead
of the Beijing Olympics.

Taklha said he hoped the eighth round of talks between Tibetan envoys
and Chinese officials will be held by the end of October.

The two sides have met to try to ease tension in Tibet since violent
riots broke out there in March.

Many Tibetans, especially younger generations, see the talks as a
Chinese ploy to delay progress on the question of either independence
or regional autonomy for Tibet.

The Dalai Lama has lived in exile in India since fleeing a failed
uprising against Chinese rule in 1959.
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