Economic Times, 20 March 2016
DHARAMSALA: Prime Minister of the Tibetan government-in-exile Lobsang Sangay has said the long-standing issue of Tibet can be resolved through dialogue with the Chinese government and sought “genuine” autonomy for Tibetan people within China.
“We remain fully committed to the Middle Way Approach, which clearly seeks genuine autonomy for the Tibetan people within China,” Sangay, political successor to the Dalai Lama, said.
“It is hoped the leaders in Beijing will see reason with the Middle Way Approach, instead of distorting it, and step forward to engage in dialogue with His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s envoys,” he said.
Tibetans are voting today to elect the next Prime Minister or ‘Sikyong’ of the Tibetan government-in-exile and other members of the 16th Tibetan Parliament.
Meanwhile, former Prime Minister-in-exile Samdhong Rinpoche didn’t cast his vote as he was “annoyed with the election process following a western style where candidates are blaming each other and spending large amount of money”.
He also alleged that the elections are not being fought on Tibetan ethics.
More than 90,000 registered Tibetans in exile across the world are taking part in the elections, which will see voting being held in the US, Japan, Russia and Australia. Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama, however, is not a voter.
The two main contestants for the post of Prime Minister are incumbent Lobsang Sangay — whose five-year term expires next month — and Speaker of the Tibetan Parliament, Penpa Tsering.
Sangay is well-placed to retain his post after he secured 19,776 more votes than Tsering, who polled 10,732 votes in the preliminary elections in October, 2015.