Media censorship in China wrong: Dalai Lama

Dharamsala, Dec 13: A majority of the people in China do not know what the Dalai Lama’s ‘middle-way approach’ for Tibet is, the Tibetan spiritual leader said Tuesday blaming censorship of the media for this.

‘If all Chinese citizens knew about it, 100 percent of the Chinese would support it,’ the Nobel laureate told reporters in Prague, according to a post on the official website of the Central Tibetan Administration based here.

Narrating an incident, the Dalai Lama said: ‘Recently I received a letter from a Chinese individual who had met a Tibetan on a pilgrimage in China. The Chinese individual had told the Tibetan that the Dalai Lama was a good Buddhist but a splittist.’

‘However, when the Tibetan explained the Tibetan issue, the Chinese individual wrote that he fully supports the ‘middle-way approach’, which does not seek separation from China but calls for genuine autonomy for the Tibetan people. The writer said that if all Chinese citizens knew about the ‘middle-way approach, 100 percent of the Chinese would support the Dalai Lama,’ said the spiritual leader.

The Dalai Lama, who visited Prague on the invitation of former Czech Republic president Vaclav Havel, said the media censorship in China was wrong as the people wanted to know the reality.

‘Peoples’ Republic of China belongs to the Chinese people. The 1.3 billion people of China are the real rulers of China. They have every right to know the reality and judge what is right and wrong. Censorship of the media is wrong,’ he added.

On dialogue between the Chinese and the Tibetans, he said: ‘The Chinese say that there is no Tibetan issue but the issue of the Dalai Lama. However, I emphasized that the issue is not about the Dalai Lama but the future of six million Tibetans.’

‘We are their free spokesperson. They have no freedom to express themselves so we have to act on their behalf,’ said the elderly Buddhist monk.

The Dalai Lama along with many of his supporters fled Tibet and took refuge in India when Chinese troops moved in and took control of Lhasa in 1959.

His Tibetan government-in-exile that never won recognition from any country is based here.

IANS