‘It has been made clear that the Tibet Autonomous Region is part of China'

Against the backdrop of self-exiled Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama meeting Prime Minister Manmohan Singh earlier this month, External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna assured China once again that it would not encourage anyone to undertake political or any other kind of activity that was detrimental to the relationship between the two countries.

Responding to questions at a joint press conference with Japanese Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada, Mr. Krishna said this assurance had been given to his Chinese counterpart Yang Jeichi.

It was also made “absolutely clear” to the Chinese leadership that the Tibetan Autonomous Region was a part of China. “That should bring the curtain down on any controversy,” Mr. Krishna said.

He began his reply by pointing out that the Indian position in this regard had been stated “repeatedly, equivocally and categorically” and that India believed the Dalai Lama was an honoured guest and a spiritual leader “held as such by millions of Indians.”

Mr. Krishna was asked the question following reports that Beijing had protested against the meeting between the Dalai Lama and Dr. Singh on August 11.

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