Hong Kong: Talks between Chinese officials and envoys from the Tibetan government-in-exile were a “good first step,” one of the Dalai Lama’s representatives said here today.
“We had very candid discussions,” said Lodi Gyari, one of the Tibetan spiritual leader’s envoys who met Chinese officials in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen.
“It was a good first step,” he said, when asked to describe the talks which followed deadly violence in the region in March.
Gyari was speaking at Hong Kong International Airport before flying back to India. He told Hong Kong’s Cable TV a statement would be made by the government-in-exile once the two envoys had reported to the Dalai Lama at his northern Indian base in Dharamshala.
The highly secretive talks were the first meeting between the two groups in more than a year following global pressure on Beijing to reopen negotiations amid seven weeks of unrest in Tibet.
Xinhua, China’s state press agency, reported earlier that the talks had ended with an agreement to meet again, although no date was set and no other major breakthrough was reported.
Despite the talks, China’s state press has maintained a barrage of abusive rhetoric against the Dalai Lama, with one report accusing him of “monstrous crimes.”
China has blamed the Dalai Lama for the unrest that erupted in Tibet’s capital, Lhasa, on March 14 and spread to Tibetan-populated regions around the country.