Tibetan leaders against Dalai Lama retiring

November 22nd, 2008 - 8:42 pm ICT by IANS  

Dharamsala, Nov 22 (IANS) Top Tibetan leaders Saturday urged their spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, not to contemplate retirement.At a special meeting of the top Tibetan leadership here to decide the future of the Tibetan struggle, nearly 600 participants from across the world unanimously urged the Dalai Lama not to think of semi-retirement or retirement.

“We cannot even think of his retirement. He has to lead the Tibetans,” Speaker Karma Cheophel of the Tibetan parliament-in-exile said at the end of the meeting.

The 73-year-old Dalai Lama has, in recent months, been saying that he was already in semi-retirement and wanted to retire completely from his responsibilities as the temporal head of the Tibetans.

Tibetans in India and other countries have been conducting prayers in recent months wishing him a long life after he was beset with medical problems. He was recently operated in a leading Delhi hospital for gall bladder stones.

The Dalai Lama, who is the best known international face of the Tibetans and is personally known to all top world leaders, has cut down on his visits to other countries following his failing health.

The Dalai Lama has been living in exile in India with thousands of his Tibetan followers since 1959, when he fled from Tibet’s capital Lhasa.

The Dalai Lama, Nobel Peace Prize winner in 1989, has been seeking genuine autonomy for Tibet under Chinese rule as per his middle-path policy instead of seeking complete independence.

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