Hi guest, Register | Login | Contact Us
Welcome to Phayul.com - Our News Your Views
Thu 14, Nov 2019 07:40 PM (IST)
Search:     powered by Google
 MENU
Home
News
Photo News
Opinions
Statements &
Press Releases

Book Reviews
Movie Reviews
Interviews
Travels
Health
Obituaries
News Discussions
News Archives
Download photos from Tibet
 Latest Stories
CTA rejects Chinese Ambassador’s claim over reincarnation of Buddhist masters
China plans its own Yellowstone on the Tibetan Plateau
Dalai Lama wishes former US President Jimmy Carter swift recovery
His Holiness interacts with members of Young Presidents’ Organisation (YPO) from Nepal
“Go back China” say protestors in Nepal against Chinese encroachment
Tibetan man detained on the eve of Uprising day for WeChat post
Tibetan Monk detained for "political" post on WeChat in Ngaba
Tibetan man sentenced for sharing teachings of Dalai Lama through Wechat
Dalai Lama interacts with students, community leaders from Washington
First episode of Phayul Plus Video Report
 Latest Photo News
Shrutika Sharma from Nainital, Uttrakhand, wins the Miss Himalaya Pageant 2019, seen with her are first runners up Shalika Rana and second runners up Sapna Devi. Oct. 13, 2019 Phayu Photo: Kunsang Gashon
Nearly 3000 Students from eight countries listened to teachings of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Three day annual teachings for youth began today. June 3, 2019. Phayul Photo: Kunsang Gashon
His Holiness the Dalai Lama is being escorted to the teaching site at Tsuglakhang temple, May 13, 2019. Phayul Photo: Kunsang Gashon
more photos »
Advertisement
Australian politicians should have no fear meeting Dalai Lama
Khaleej Times Online[Thursday, May 24, 2007 10:09]

THE Dalai Lama is a man of peace but he creates divisions and arguments in every country he visits. He is about to touchdown in Australia to spread his message where his imminent visit has flummoxed political leaders.

A visit to any country by the Tibetan spiritual leader is always preceded by dire warnings from Beijing of "interference" in China's affairs. The Dalai Lama fled to India in 1959 after a failed uprising against Communist rule, nine years after the Chinese army marched into Tibet. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989.

The Dalai Lama says he wants greater autonomy, not independence, for his predominantly Buddhist homeland, but China considers him a separatist and accuses him of continuing to promote Tibetan independence.

Recently, the 71-year-old exiled Tibetan spiritual leader called off a visit to Brussels amid Chinese "objections" ahead of an important Belgian trade mission to China.
There is particular sensitivity for the government of John Howard with a visit to Australia by the leader of one of the world's major religions. The issue is trade? China buys huge amounts of Australia's gas and coal and recently overtook Japan as Australia's second largest trading partner.

In 1996, shortly after Howard became prime minister, he met the Dalai Lama as a "religious leader" not a political leader. Beijing was infuriated and threatened trade sanctions. The megaphone diplomacy apparently worked because Howard refused to meet the Dalai Lama on his next visit in 2002.

After that visit, a senior foreign affairs official told a parliamentary hearing that it was official policy of the Howard government that no ministers would meet the Tibetan spiritual leader.

The then opposition leader Simon also refused to meet the Dalai Lama and delegated the meeting to his then foreign affairs spokesman Kevin Rudd, who is now the opposition leader. A week ago The Canberra Times sparked national debate by revealing that Howard and Rudd would not say whether they would meet the important visitor. After further prodding, they said they would not meet the Dalai Lama.

The Senate president also revealed that the government would ban an official reception in parliament for the Dalai Lama.

While Australians like trading with the region, they do not like their leaders "kow-towing" to other capitals. Therefore many callers to radio programmes complained that Howard and Rudd were being weak in trying to appease Beijing. They pointed out that visiting leaders of the Muslim and Jewish faiths are treated hospitably in predominantly Christian Australia.

It's an election year and Howard and Rudd, stung by the criticism, promptly did a back flip and declared they would "check their diaries" to see if they could meet the distinguished Buddhist leader.

The change of heart has prompted heated responses from Beijing, which issued a thinly-veiled warning to Australian political leaders not to meet the exiled Tibetans spiritual leader, urging them to "stay on high alert" to actions and words aimed at splitting China.

Howard appeared to reject the warning, saying he would make his decisions on what he thought was right. "If I am able to meet the Dalai Lama, I will,'' he said. The statement leaves him ample scope not to have a meeting, especially as the Dalai Lama has a packed schedule.

The Dalai Lama is visiting several cities during his national tour of Australia next month. During his brief visit to Canberra, he will address the National Press Club and attend an inter-faith rally at a football arena. At the rally he will be joined on stage by representatives of the Muslim, Jewish and Christian clerics. The event promises to be a fitting reception for the distinguished visitor, as well as a showcase of acceptance of the various faiths.

The politicians who worry they will jeopardise trade by meeting the Dalai Lama should have no fear. Beijing is now buying uranium from Australia, along with the other resources, and will continue to do so, to feed the growing energy needs of its huge population.

Ordinary Australians have no such qualms about meeting the Tibetan spiritual leader, with the evidence being the enormous rush for the free and paid places at his lectures.

Ross Peake is a Canberra-based political analyst
Print Send Bookmark and Share
  Readers' Comments »
Dalai Lama's visit to Australia (ausy)
Chinas warning to politcal leaders. (monday)
Your Comments

 Other Stories
Rick Ray's search for "10 Questions for the Dalai Lama"
Satyagrah campaign to save Tibet
May 23: A Black Day in Tibetan history
Australian politicians should have no fear meeting Dalai Lama
Internet is new frontline in war for human rights: Amnesty
Dalai Lama can visit Kenya, Govt clarifies
Kenya's foreign policy need to be decisive
Advertisement
Advertisement
Photo Galleries
Advertisement
Phayul.com does not endorse the advertisements placed on the site. It does not have any control over the google ads. Please send the URL of the ads if found objectionable to editor@phayul.com
Copyright © 2004-2019 Phayul.com   feedback | advertise | contact us
Powered by Lateng Online
Advertisement