Dalai Lama says China alone can stop Tibetan self-immolations

(TibetanReview.net, Nov11, 2013)  The Dalai Lama has refuted China’s accusation that by refusing to appeal to Tibetans to stop the self-immolations, he tacitly endorses their actions. In an exclusive interview carried by the Financial Times (London) on Nov 9, Tibet’s spiritual leader in exile has said China alone could stop the self-immolations because it was their policies of repression which was driving them to this extreme form of protest.

“If I created this, then I have the right to say, ‘No, don’t do’,” he was quoted as saying forcefully. “This is their own creation: Tibetan people – inside Tibet. These people, I consider my boss. I am carrying their wish. I am not demanding, ‘you should do this, you should not do this’ … The causes of these things are created by hard-line officials. They have the responsibility. They have to find ways to stop this.”

 The Dalai Lama has also said it was very difficult for him to tell the Tibetans in Tibet to stop the self-immolations because he did not have any alternative to offer them, that he could not tell them to keep facing these unbearable difficulties.

 “Those self-burnings: these people, not drunk. Not family problems … The overall situation is so tense, so desperate, so they choose a very sad way … It is difficult to say, ‘You must live and face these unbearable difficulties.’ If I have some alternative to offer them, then I [can] say, ‘Don’t do that. Instead of shortening your life, please live long, and we can do this and this and that.’ But [I have] nothing – no alternative. Morally, [it’s] very difficult. There is no other choice but to remain silent, and prayer. Clear?” he was quoted as saying.

 The Dalai Lama has also said that while Tibet was historically an independent nation, we must now “look forward and according to the reality,” and that “it is (in) our own interest to remain within the People’s Republic of China.”



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