Message from the Kalon Tripa’s Desk
1 October, 2002
Dear fellow Tibetans and friends of Tibet,
In recent times there have been some positive development in our effort to
re-establish contact with the Chinese leadership. As you all know, Special Envoy Lodi Gyaltsen Gyari and Envoy Kelsang Gyaltsen visited Beijing and Lhasa from 9-24 September 2002 and met Chinese leaders and senior officials. On their return, they reported to His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Kashag that they had been encouraged by their discussions with the Chinese leadership. This gives us hope that we can open a new chapter in our relationship and start a process of dialogue, leading to negotiations toward resolving the issue of Tibet.
His Holiness welcomed Beijing’s positive gesture in receiving our
delegation and was very pleased that the contact has been renewed. He
instructed the Kashag and his envoys to make full use of the new opportunity
and continue our efforts to advance this process vigorously.
The Kashag reported the latest development to the Assembly of Tibetan People’s Deputies during its recent session. We have informed the Assembly that we will respond to the Chinese gesture by devoting the period till June 2003 towards creating a conducive atmosphere for building on the new contact. I look forward to the cooperation of the Tibetans and friends of Tibet in this endeavour.
In October, Chinese President Jiang Zemin is visiting the United States and
Mexico. In the past Tibetans and Tibet supporters throughout the world had used the opportunity of Chinese leaders’ visits to convey their feelings through peaceful rallies and demonstrations. One of the objectives of such actions was to encourage the Chinese leaders to respond to His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s initiatives for a negotiated settlement of the Tibetan problem. Now that there is an indication that the Chinese leadership may be willing to start discussing with us, we could use the opportunity of President Jiang’s visit to test China’s response. I want to urge all Tibetans and friends of Tibet to refrain from public actions like rallies and demonstrations during President Jiang’s visit to the United States and Mexico.
This is a crucial time in our nonviolent struggle. It is of utmost importance that the worldwide Tibet movement is able to arrive at a unified position on important issues such as this. It will be a strong gesture for dialogue, nonviolence and reconciliation during a time when the international community is threatened by terrorism, violence and war cries.
Prof. Samdhong Rinpoche
September 30, 2002