By Sangpo Tenzin
Parma Italy, April 15 - The Northern City of Parma known for its rich artistic centres and authentic Italian cuisine dedicated a day of solidarity for Tibet.
President of the Tibetan Community in Italy, Dr. Thupten Tenzin met Mayor Pietro Vignali, Vice Mayor Paolo Buzzi and President of the Province of Parma. He presented the Italian leaders with the Tibetan National flag as a mark of respect.
In his support the Mayor said, "There have been strong messages from different parts of the world to the Chinese authority to immediately stop the repression in Tibet and to listen to the demands of the Tibetan people who demonstrated through non-violent protests. We also appeal to the Chinese Government and firmly support the rights of all people, right for freedom, democracy and justice for which we have struggled in our very own history. Apart from the question of boycotting the Olympic Games, the Government of Italy strongly stands behind the Tibetan cause and will contribute endlessly to the efforts of His Holiness The Dalai Lama".
An open public conference was held at the famous 'Teatro di Reggio' theatre on the evening of April 15. Representatives of all religious wings from the City of Parma expressed their support to the struggle of the Tibetan people. In his statement, Dr. Thupten Tenzin thanked the City for its support and underlined that international assistance as well as encouragement is crucial to the peaceful struggle of Tibetans.
The Mayor presented the Tibetan Community leader with the Seal of City of Parma to be handed over to H.H the Dalai Lama as a sign of respect, recognition and a testimony of peace and liberty that Tibetan people stand for.
On the back of the seal reads 'From the city of Parma to H.H the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan people for their testimony for freedom'
The Seal of the City is normally conferred to political and religious authorities. Being awarded the Seal signifies the recognition of the Dalai Lama and Tibetan government in exile by the administration of Parma.
The initiative was promoted with the kind support of local journalist and writer of Parma, Mr Pino Agnetti.