The Dalai Lama praised today Chinese citizens' increasing criticism of Beijing's policy on Tibet, but saw little chance for a short-term solution on the region.
"Things are hopeful in the long run, very hopeful, but in the short term, (it is) very difficult," the Tibetan spiritual leader said when asked by journalists about a possible solution that would allow him to return to Tibet.
"Among the Chinese people, many intellectuals, many professors, many educated young people are really showing a critical view about their government's policy towards Tibet," the Nobel peace prize laureate added.
The Dalai Lama arrived Monday on a three-day unofficial visit to Slovenia.
Today, he delivered a lecture to some 6,000 people in Maribor, according to the town authorities who had organised the visit.
He was also expected to meet opposition party leaders, including former premier Janez Jansa, leader of the centre-right Slovenian Democratic Party.
No meetings were planned with Slovenian authorities however.
China's embassy has repeatedly protested against the visit, warning it would damage bilateral relations.
China claims that Tibet is an integral part of the country and that any meeting with him constitutes interference in its internal affairs.
Slovenian Prime Minister Borut Pahor said last week that authorities "would show adequate attention" to the Dalai Lama but did not mention any meeting with the Tibetan leader.