Two of the Nobel Laureates, Jody Williams from the United States, and Shirin Ebadi from Iran have arrived in Dharamsala, northern India to participate in an official function to mark 25 years of the conferment of the Nobel Peace Prize to the Dalai Lama on October 2, Mahatma Gandhi’s birthday.
Lobsang Sangay, head of the Tibetan administration in exile, who accompanied the laureates to a press conference at the Lhakpa Tsering Hall, said that the Central Tibetan Administration chose the birthday of Mahatma Gandhi for the commemoration to remember his tireless efforts in promoting non-violence.
Addressing the press conference today, Shirin Ebadi recalled a Noble Laureates summit in Costa Rica, eight years back, where the Dalai Lama was not invited due to pressure imposed by the Chinese government. During that period, few of the laureates boycotted the conference to show their support towards Tibet's spiritual leader.
“One who does not speak against dictatorship are contributing to the crimes committed by them,” Ebadi further added while expressing her surprise at Archbishop Desmond Tutu, a close friend of the Dalai Lama and a nobel laureate, who remained silent regarding his country's move.
Jody Williams shared the concerns they had from the beginning of the 14th Nobel Summit, when it was decided to be hosted in Cape Town, and said that South Africa, by denying visa to the Dalai Lama, has violated the human rights of the Dalai Lama to attend the summit. “And we stand behind the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan people in telling the world that they are not alone.”
The Nobel Laureates are scheduled to attend an official function with the Dalai Lama tomorrow, October 2, 2014.