Chinese envoy thanks India for embassy security

March 27th, 2008 - 9:47 pm ICT by admin  

New Delhi, March 27 (IANS) China’s ambassador to India Zhang Yan Thursday called on Home Minister Shivraj Patil, thanking him for the steps taken to provide protection to the Chinese diplomatic and consular premises in the face of Tibetan protests here. Ever since demonstrations broke out in Lhasa and elsewhere early this month, the Chinese embassy here has been virtually turned into a fortress with a large Delhi Police contingent deployed around it. The roads around it have been closed to the public.

The police have been guarding the perimeter of the sprawling embassy in the high-security Chanakyapuri diplomatic enclave.

Reinforcements were made after March 21 when a few Tibetan activists protesting the reported Chinese crackdown in Lhasa entered the embassy premises by scaling its high boundary wall after giving policemen the slip.

The incident was undoubtedly an embarrassment for Delhi Police. Since then vigil around the embassy has been beefed up.

During their brief meeting at North Block, Patil assured the envoy of the Indian government’s continued cooperation.

Zhang has been in the thick of action since protests by the Tibetans have intensified, and urged India not to be misled by the “lies” of the Dalai Lama, the Tibetan spiritual leader. He warned against any international “meddling” in China’s “internal affairs”.

He even expressed disapproval of US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi meeting the Dalai Lama in Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh, last week where she asked all freedom-loving people to speak out against China’s “oppression” in Tibet.

However, he was cautious in his comments on India’s position on the unrest in Lhasa and thanked New Delhi for ensuring the security of the Chinese embassy, consulates and staff.

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