Statement of Kashag on the 71st Birthday Celebration of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, 6 July 2006

On behalf of the Tibetans in and outside Tibet, as well as all the people of the world who hold His Holiness the Dalai Lama in high esteem, the Kashag extends its warm greetings by offering our deepest obeisance to him on his 71st birthday celebration. The Kashag also prays that His Holiness may continue to live for aeons to come and that all his noble wishes be spontaneously fulfilled.

Today is a very special occasion because on this day the world has witnessed the birth of a great leader, not just of the Tibetans but of the humanity as a whole. As such, the day is being celebrated by a countless number of people across the globe.

Coinciding with his 70th birthday, the Kashag had offered a long-life prayer to His Holiness on 8 June last year. During the ceremony, we articulated our desire to mark the year ahead in celebration of our gratitude to his benevolent leadership. The Tibetan Administration and the general public had, accordingly, initiated a series of merit-earning activities, the list of which is submitted here for the kind perusal of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. We pray that the merits earned from this work as well as those from the highly-realised beings serve as a cause for your longevity and perpetuation of your great service towards humanity.

This is the last time that the 12th Kashag is celebrating His Holiness’ birthday. We, therefore, take this opportunity to express our heartfelt gratitude to His Holiness for guiding us during the last five years in carrying out our spiritual and political responsibilities.

In order to resolve the Tibetan issue, the envoys of His Holiness the Dalai Lama have been able to hold five rounds of Sino-Tibetan talks since 2002, based on the Middle-Way Approach. The aspirations of the Tibetan people have now become crystal clear to the Peoples Republic of China, and the Sino-Tibetan ties have further deepened and improved. Unfortunately, there has not been a positive change in Chinas policy on Tibet. Human rights violations, environmental destruction, lack of religious freedom, patriotic re-education campaigns to brainwash monastic institutions and ban on the photographs of His Holiness the Dalai Lama still continues. Moreover, since early May this year, the leaders from the so-called Tibet Autonomous Region and from the United Front Work Department have stepped up their campaigns to denounce His Holiness the Dalai Lama by making baseless allegations and derogatory remarks against him. Such irresponsible remarksdriven as they are by feelings of anxiety, fear and lack of confidencestems from the fact that these are made hastily with no consideration to logic or reasoning. This has deeply saddened not just the Tibetans but millions of people in the international community who care for and respect Tibetan religion and culture. It has also become one of the serious causes of separatism among the nationalities, especially at a time when His Holiness the Dalai Lama is making sincere efforts towards a harmonious co-existence of the Tibetan people in the big family of the People’s Republic of China. Such actions are not only unbecoming for a powerful country like China, but also seriously harms the atmosphere of Sino-Tibetan dialogue process. We hope such acts of irresponsibility on the part of the Peoples Republic of China ends soon and shall not be repeated in the future. Separation of mind is the most serious form of separatism. Spreading separatist activities in the name of preventing separatism itself is a grave mistake, endangering the future of both the nation and the nationalities. This, we emphasise, should be understood by all. As far as His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan administration are concerned, there is no change whatsoever in our determination to engage in dialogue for resolving the issue of Tibet through the present Sino-Tibetan contacts.

Finally, we pray for the long life and good health of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. We also pray for the perpetuation of his meritorious works. May the truth of the issue of Tibet prevail soon!

The Kashag 6 July 2006

N.B. Translated from the original statement in Tibetan.

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