DHARAMSHALA, June 26: Beijing appointed top Tibetan leader Padma Choling has welcomed Tibetans living outside Tibet to return to their homes and settle down, asserting that the doors to Tibet were “always open” for them.
His statements follow the first meeting of the ‘Federation of Returned Overseas Compatriots’ in Tibet’s capital Lhasa on June 8.
Choling, who fills the posts of vice secretary of the Party Committee of the so called Tibet Autonomous Region and director-general of the Standing Committee of the Tibet People’s Congress, made the remarks while speaking to “renowned Chinese leaders and local Tibetans” at a symposium in China’s Consulate General in New York on June 22.
He was leading a delegation of members of China’s rubberstamp National People’s Congress from TAR which toured the United States of America and Canada for two weeks.
Choling spoke about the “remarkable achievements in terms of economy, construction of people’s livelihood, and religious harmony” that Tibet has seen over the past six decades, while laying down the invitation, China’s state media Xinhua reported on June 24.
He said, “overseas Tibetans are always welcome back ‘home’ to settle down,” while noting that “many elderly overseas Tibetans have come back and the door to Tibet is always open to more overseas Tibetans.”
Earlier, Chen Quanguo, China’s point man in Tibet, had urged Tibetans who have returned from abroad and their family members to “support China’s overseas interests” in his address at the first meeting of the Federation of Returned Overseas Chinese in Lhasa on June 8.
According to US based news service VoA, Chen, who is TAR communist party secretary said the returnees should use their connections with overseas Tibetans to help strengthen the “patriotic force of overseas compatriots” with their “maximum” capacity.
He further added that the patriotic returnees and overseas compatriots “should contribute towards the long term stability in Tibet.”
Talks about setting up the overseas office in order to “communicate with and serve exiled Tibetans and assist them in returning back to the country” first became public in September last year.
According to Lin Jun, chairman of All-China Federation of Returned Overseas Chinese, the federation aims “to provide access for returned overseas Tibetans to ask for help and pursue development abroad, and built a major platform for them to get information about and participate in Tibet’s development.”