The Washington, DC based Office of Tibet organized a dinner reception for friends and supporters of Tibet in New York City on October 18, 2016.
The purpose of the reception was to continue its long time relationship with Chinese friends and Tibet supporters, while welcoming new friends and introducing the new representative of the Office of Tibet, Mr. Penpa Tsering, former Speaker of the Tibetan Parliament in exile.
The new representative of the Office of Tibet, in an interview with VOA said that one of the important works of the Office of Tibet is to build a genuine relationship with Chinese brothers and sisters as per the Dalai Lama's wish. Tsering further added that the office is planning to organize a gathering for the Chinese friends and Tibet supporters in the Washington area to build a one-on-one relationship in the near future.
At the event, Dr. Teng Biao, a visiting scholar from China stated that the Dalai Lama has dedicated many years to promote mutual understanding between the Chinese and Tibetans, and despite it being difficult to achieve freedom and democracy in China and Tibet, it is important to establish a good relationship between Tibetans and Chinese to have the possibility of a peaceful transition from the current situation into a free and democratic system.
Chinese dissident writer Mr. Chen Pokong who was present at the event said, “What I feel today is we have a lot of overseas exile Chinese and dissident writers, long term friendship and cooperation with overseas Tibetan brothers and sisters, where we treat each others as brothers and sisters and we will continue this relationship. We are happy that the new representative of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to the North America Mr. Penpa Tsering is here." Mr. Pokong added that they will continue to work together to enhance the relationship and cooperation for a common dream which is ‘Freedom and Democracy’ in China and Tibet. "Today, we feel this good atmosphere - we trust and love each other, closely cooperate with each other. We can follow the 'middle way approach' proposed by the Dalai Lama, which I believe is realistic and one day he will be able to return to Tibet and visit China. Our Chinese people and the Tibetans can build a new relationship between China and Tibet, that will be based on friendship and respect in this century."
Chinese scholars, writers, bloggers, lawyers, activists, and long time Tibet supporters were present at the dinner along with presidents and directors of various Tibetan associations and organizations in the New York area.
A group of former members of the Dharamsala, India based Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts entertained the guest with cultural Tibetan dance and songs. The event concluded with performances by a few local Tibetan artists who performed both traditional and modern Tibetan songs, followed by some Chinese guests who volunteered to sing.