China and Tibet agree to more talks

Envoys are open for further discussions after inital talks fail to produce a result.

    The talks come seven weeks after protests against Chinese rule erupted in the Tibetan region [Reuters]

    Xinhua, China's official news agency, reported: "Chinese central government officials and the private representatives of the 14 Dalai Lama agreed to hold another round of contact and consultation at an appropriate time."
     
    Presidential hopes
     
    Hu Jintao, the Chinese president, had expressed his desire for a positive outcome before the meeting between the Chinese officials and two Dalai Lama envoys commenced.

     

    The dialogue took place seven weeks after protests against Chinese rule in Tibet and a subsequent crackdown by China, which caused an international uproar including demonstrations targeting the Beijing Olympics.

      

    Tibet and adjoining regions were rocked in March by the biggest protests in nearly two decades against China's rule in the predominantly Buddhist Himalayan territory.

     

    The Olympic torch returned to mainland China after a troubled worldwide relay which included protests in a number of cities, including London and Paris.

     

    Conditions for talks
     
    The envoys at the meeting were

    Sitar and Zhu Weiqun from China's ruling Communist party's United Front Work Department, and Lodi Gyari and Kelsang Gyaltsen the Dalai Lama's senior envoys.

     

    Xinhua stated that the Chinese envoys had called their government's actions in putting down the protests as "completely correct".

     

    Sitar and Zhu publically repeated what the Dalai Lama should do to "create conditions" for further talks.

     

    "The Dalai side would take credible moves to stop activities aimed at splitting China, stop plotting and inciting violence, and stop disrupting and sabotaging the Beijing Olympic Games."

     

    Tibetan officials had expressed that their priority for the talks was to end the repression that recently hit Tibet.

     

    Thubten Samphel, the Tibetan government-in-exile's spokesman, said on Sunday: "Our immediate concern is for the repression to end and all restrictions on Tibetans should be lifted."

     

    Tibet was invaded by Chinese troops in 1950 and annexed by China a year later.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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