Sangay replaces Dalai Lama as Tibetan political head
PRESS TRUST OF INDIA
Dharamsala, Aug 8: Harvard scholar Lobsang Sangay was today sworn in as new Prime Minister of Tibetan government -in-exile, succeeding the Dalai Lama as political head and said he was willing to negotiate with Beijing "anytime, anywhere" for "genuine" autonomy for Tibet within China.
43-year-old Sangay, who replaces Samdong Rimpoche as Kalon Tripa (Prime Minister), vowed to continue with the Dalai Lama's 'middle-path' policy and stressed that Tibetan leadership is far from "fizzling out".
"We are here to stay," Sangay, a Delhi University alumni, said at a function presided by Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama and attended by 5,000 Tibetans, including community leaders settled outside Tibet and India, who braved heavy showers to witness the oath-taking ceremony.
He said, "We believe in a peaceful resolution of Tibet issue, which means a peaceful process and peaceful dialogue.
"We are also willing to negotiate with the Chinese government anytime, anywhere and continue to follow the Middle-Way policy, which seeks genuine autonomy for Tibet within the People's Republic," said Sangay, who was born in Darjeeling and associated with pro-independence Tibetan Youth Congress.
Expressing gratitude to Indian Government for allowing Tibetans to stay in the country, he stressed that Tibet should be the "main issue in any talks between India and China".
"Tibet is crucial for India and a lasting negotiated solution is in interest of both the countries," he later told reporters.
In his brief speech, the 76-year-old Dalai Lama expressed his gratitude to the Tibetans in exile for participating in the democratic process.
"We have handed over all political responsibilities and all the powers now vest in democratically-elected leadership of Lobsang Sangay," the Dalai Lama, who remains the spiritual head of the Tibetans, said in his Tibetan language speech.
Lastupdate on : Mon, 8 Aug 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Mon, 8 Aug 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Tue, 9 Aug 2011 00:00:00 IST
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