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HindustanTimes Fri,18 Apr 2014

'Treat Tibet as 'core issue' in talks with China'

PTI  New Delhi, January 31, 2013
First Published: 19:02 IST(31/1/2013) | Last Updated: 19:04 IST(31/1/2013)

Resolution of the Tibet issue through "genuine" autonomy could act as a catalyst for modernisation of China, Prime Minister of Tibetan government-in-exile Lobsang Sangay said on Thursday, asking countries to speak up openly in favour of the cause.

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Addressing a seminar on 'Tibet: Current situation and its implications for China and India' in New Delhi, he said India should treat Tibet as a "core issue" during its talks with China so that its security and environmental issues are taken care of.

He also slammed the apathy of countries in not recognising the "peaceful struggle" by Tibetans for "genuine autonomy" from Chinese regime, saying they need to understand that there is a "disconnect between reality and rhetoric".

In this regard, he criticised western countries' stand on Syria saying they support an "armed revolution" but not a "peaceful struggle".

"We have made our stand very clear. We want genuine autonomy. Granting that autonomy would act as a catalyst for modernisation of China. We have been maturely and peacefully protesting. It would act as catalyst for modernisation and liberalisation of China," he said.

Sangay made it clear that Tibetans in no way plan or intend to challenge China's territorial integrity over Tibet, but would need "genuine autonomy" and restoration of their "self-respect".

"As a guest, we would just like to request India to treat Tibet as a 'core issue' during its talks with China so that its security and environmental issues are taken care of," he said.

Former foreign secretary Lalit Mansingh, who was also present, emphasised the need for India to make Tibet its core issue during talks with China and said the "China-Pakistan nexus" is always a cause of concern for India.

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