Thursday, 18 September 2014

Xi Jinping 'open-minded and realistic': Dalai Lama

MUMBAI: As he engaged in talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Chinese President Xi Jinping came in for praise from an unlikely quarter, exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama, who described him as "open-minded" and "realistic". 

The Dalai Lama also said good India-China relations based on mutual trust will benefit not just Asia but the whole world. 

"Sino-Indian relations (build) on the basis of mutual trust are very important. Not only the whole of Asia, but the entire world can benefit from their (good) relations. Harmony can be brought by trust and not fear. 

"I have faith in the new leadership. He (Xi) is open-minded and his way of working is quite realistic," the 79-year-old Buddhist monk said while addressing a gathering here to mark the 108th Foundation Day of Indian Merchants' Chamber and its ladies' wing. 

He said Xi should take lessons from "strong" Indian democratic practices and the "oneness" in diversity. 

"India is a vast country with a huge population. Different parts of the country speak different languages, yet there is a sense of oneness among Indians. Democracy is practised strongly in the country and there is a free media. The Chinese president should learn these values from Indians," he said.
On the contentious border issue, he said it should be resolved through understanding and not by use of force. 

"Tibet's problem is also India's problem. Before 1950, there was not a single soldier on the northern border and it (the border) was peaceful. Sooner or later you have to solve the problem, not by force but by understanding. And understanding comes through talks," he said. 

Reacting to the detention of Tibetans by police following their protest against Xi's visit, the Dalai Lama said," Tibetans are law abiding citizens. But the rest is up to the Government of India."

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