US Special Coordinator Uzra Zeya visits Dharamsala and meets Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama

By Choekyi Lhamo

DHARAMSHALA, May 19: US Special Coordinator for Tibetan Issues Uzra Zeya met with Tibetan leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama at his residence in Dharamshala on Thursday. “It is quite clear that changing Tibetan minds [has] completely failed by the chinese communist [Party]. Meanwhile, China itself thinks [is] rapidly changing; now socialism, marxism [has] gone,” the exiled leader told dignitaries. The US official’s two-day visit to Dharamsala comes weeks after CTA Chairman Penpa Tsering visited Washington last month.

“Your Holiness, it is a great honor for me to have this audience with you. I am Uzra Zeya; I am President Biden’s Special Coordinator for Tibetan Issues and it is my greatest honor to be received by you. I bring greetings from our President and the American people. Best wishes for your good health and our gratitude for your message of peace to the world,” Zeya said, emphasizing US support for the Tibetan cause.

The octogenarian leader also said that the United States of America and India are great nations where “democracy guarantees complete freedom” for the people. The Dalai Lama noted that India is a remarkable example of a flourishing democracy since all religious traditions coexist in India. “It’s unity,” he remarked.

Acting ICT Vice President Tencho Gyatso, who also accompanied the delegation, said in a report ahead of the visit: “We believe this trip can and should translate President Biden’s statements of support into the proactive initiatives needed. to build global support for Tibet, including lifting the veil that the CCP’s 70-year occupation is an “internal affair. Negotiations between Chinese and Tibetan officials are to begin. The State Department has announced on Monday that she will “visit May 17-22 to India and Nepal to deepen cooperation on human rights and democratic governance objectives, and to advance humanitarian priorities”.

US diplomat Zeya presented the religious leader with a Native American dreamcatcher, as a sign of solidarity among oppressed groups across borders. As Under Secretary of State, she is a senior official to former Special Coordinator Robert Destro who served in the Trump administration.

On Wednesday, Zeya toured CTA offices, including the Kashag Secretariat, the Supreme Justice Commission, the Tibet Museum and the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives, after being greeted by hundreds of Tibetans.

CTA’s official spokesperson, Tenzin Lekshay, told reporters that Undersecretary Zeya’s official visit to Dharamshala is of utmost importance to the cause: “The Biden administration’s prompt appointment of the post of special for Tibet was in itself a notable decision. His visit confirms his willingness to support the cause, as evidenced by his planned interaction with His Holiness the Dalai Lama and meeting with CTA official staff. This is indeed the first step by which the coordinator would pave the way for the US government to help the Tibetan cause.

US President Joe Biden previously promised to appoint a special coordinator for Tibet and meet with the revered Dalai Lama. “I will work with our allies to pressure Beijing to resume direct dialogue with representatives of the Tibetan people in order to achieve meaningful autonomy, respect for human rights and preservation of the environment. of Tibet as well as its unique cultural, linguistic and religious traditions,” US President Biden said in September 2020 during his election campaign.