In their joint statement on the 34th birthday of Panchen Lama, Gedhun Choekyi Nyima, Els Van Hoof, President and Samuel Cogolati, Vice-President, of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Belgian Federal Parliament condemn the Chinese government’s interference in the selection and recognition of the reincarnation of His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama. They further state that the system of recognising reincarnated spiritual beings is a religious practice unique to Tibetan Buddhism and should solely be the prerogative of the present Dalai Lama himself and no one else.
In addition they also strongly support Tibetan people’s right to freedom of religion, cultural and linguistic identity.
Moreover, they called on the Chinese authorities to provide proof of life and account for Gedhun Choekyi Nyima’s whereabouts and called for his and his parents’ immediate release, along with all other Tibetan political prisoners.
Read the joint statement below.