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"Canada can, within a positive friendly atmosphere, ask the Chinese government to resolve the Tibetan situation."

Dalai Lama: Poles Can Do a Lot for Tibet's Autonomy

December 13, 2008

Gazeta Wyborcza - Warszawa,Poland
2008-12-12
 
'When we are born, each of us has the same potential of human love,' the Tibetan spiritual leader told Polish deputies. And he stressed that Stalin, Hitler, or Saddam Hussein were once children too.
 
His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama met Sejm Speaker Bronisław Komorowski and Senate Speaker Bogdan Borusewicz yesterday. He was also a guest of the parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee. He said, among other things, that the world must not forget the fundamental values, that they need to be taught in school from the earliest years.
 
'In the UK children are taught ethics from kindergarten, the subject is called "happiness." It's the right way,' said the Dalai Lama.
 
The deputies, irrespective of their political affiliation, assured the Dalai Lama of their support for the Tibetan cause. In front of Beata Bublewicz (PO), head of the parliamentary group for Tibet, lay the Tibetan flag, loathed by Chinese officials.
 
'I cannot speak on behalf of the Polish government nor all Poles, but I have the impression that the Dalai Lama will always be welcomed in Poland,' said Marek Borowski (SdPL).
 
The Dalai Lama stressed that Poland could do a lot, raising the Tibetan issue on the EU forum.
 
'It doesn't mean whether the meeting is official or unofficial. What matters is to talk, to meet face to face,' he said, asked about his Thursday meeting with Lech Kaczyński. Even though the Presidential Chancellery says the meeting was an unofficial one, the Polish ambassador in Beijing was nonetheless asked for explanations yesterday by the Chinese Foreign Ministry. The embassy received an official protest letter, appealing for Poland to avoid 'decisions harming bilateral relations and violating China's vital interests.'
 
At the Sejm, the Dalai Lama stressed he did not want anyone to have problems because of him. He joked that he experienced the 'Chinese blessing' wherever he went. He appealed for countries of the world to draw China into the mainstream of world democracy by supporting its intellectuals and activists advocating change.
 
'China could win respect and authority. But it harms itself by acting not like a superpower but like a small country. It can actually get offended for a couple of press articles,' said the Tibetan leader.
 
The Dalai Lama spoke standing to be able to better see everyone. He often smiled and patiently posed for photographs. At some point he asked, 'Is there a Chinese correspondent in the room?' No one came forward. 'You have a Chinese face,' he said to a man in the audience. 'I'm South Korean,' the man responded. In the afternoon the Dalai Lama spoke to an audience of 5,000 at the Torwar sports/concert hall in Warsaw. He leaves Poland today.
 
Warsaw Without a Free Tibet Roundabout
 
Despite the efforts of PiS and SdPL councillors, the Warsaw Municipal Council failed yesterday to pass a decision naming one of the city's roundabouts the Free Tibet Roundabout. The PO, which had made the original proposition, was against. It is unofficially known that the PO councillors changed their mind following an intervention from the Foreign Ministry, where, in turn, the 2nd secretary of the Chinese embassy had intervened. The roundabout will receive the name of Free Tibet after all, but later. The Dalai Lama met Warsaw president Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz (PO) yesterday. She welcomed the PiS's idea to make the Dalai Lama a freeman of the city.
 
translated by Marcin Wawrzyńczak
 
Dominik Uhlig, iwo
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