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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?"

Statement by the Dalai Lama's Special Envoy, Lodi Gyaltsen Gyari, on the arrival of His Holiness the Dalai Lama in Washington, DC

October 8, 2009

October 5, 2009

His Holiness the Dalai Lama arrives in Washington, DC, for a five-day visit
today during which he will meet Speaker Pelosi and other Congressional
leaders. His Holiness has many years of personal close friendship with many
members of Congress and he is greatly appreciative of the consistent and
strong bipartisan support extended by the US Congress to the Tibetan people.
The US Congress bestowed the Congressional Gold Medal upon His Holiness in

His Holiness will not be meeting with President Obama on this visit. From
the outset, there has been no question of President Obama not at the
appropriate time meeting His Holiness, whom he holds in great esteem. Taking
a broader and long-term perspective, His Holiness agreed to meet the
President after the November US-China Summit.

The Dalai Lama has always been supportive of American engagement with China.
Our hope is that the cooperative US-Chinese relationship that President
Obama's administration seeks will create conditions that support the
resolution of the legitimate grievances of the Tibetan people.

The decision to send a high-level delegation headed by his senior advisor
and close friend Valerie Jarrett, accompanied by Under Secretary Maria
Otero, Special Coordinator for Tibetan Issues, to Dharamsala, indicates a
new approach on Tibet by the US administration. His Holiness conveyed to the
President's emissaries that he looks forward to meeting with the President
later this year and thanks the President for his invitation.

During his visit to Washington this week, His Holiness will also receive the
first Lantos Human Rights Prize award by the Lantos Foundation for Human
Rights and Justice, created in the name of his close friend, the late
Congressman Tom Lantos, a world-renowned human rights advocate and friend of
His Holiness.

His Holiness will also present the International Campaign for Tibet's Light
of Truth award posthumously to Julia Taft, a great humanitarian and former
Special Coordinator for Tibetan Issues, and to a group of Chinese who have,
at great personal risk, spoken out in China about Tibet. He will also
participate in a two-day Mind and Life conference, bringing together
world-renowned educators, scientists, and contemplatives to explore the
emerging field of contemplative learning and its potential contribution to
education. See: educatingworldcitizens dot org .

The Dalai Lama will also give a lecture on contemporary Buddhism, "The Heart
of Change: Finding Wisdom in the Modern World" at American University. See:
dalailamadc09 dot com .

A schedule for the visit is at: savetibet dot org .
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