News Column

Obama Urged to Cancel Dalai Lama Meeting

July 16, 2011

China has urged U.S. President Barack Obama to cancel a scheduled White House meeting Saturday with exiled Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama.

The two men were to meet in Washington for private discussions lasting about 30 minutes. "The president will highlight his enduring support for dialogue between the Dalai Lama's representatives and the Chinese government to resolve differences," a White House statement said.

Chinese officials firmly opposes any senior foreign government officials meeting with the Dalai Lama.

"The issue regarding Tibet concerns China's sovereignty and territorial integrity, and we firmly oppose any foreign official to meet with the Dalai Lama in any form," Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei told China's official Xinhua news agency.

Obama last met with the Dalai Lama in February 2010, the BBC said.

Source: Copyright United Press International 2011

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