Accessibility links

Breaking News

Bush Urges Chinese Leaders to Invite the Dalai Lama

President Bush says he urged Chinese President Hu Jintao to meet with the Dalai Lama to hear for himself that the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader has no desire for an independent Tibet.

"I thought it would be wise for the Chinese government to invite the Dalai Lama, so he can tell them exactly what he told me in the White House the other day, that he has no desire for an independent Tibet. "

Mr. Bush, who met with the Dalai Lama earlier this month, says he raised the subject with Mr. Hu Sunday. But Mr. Bush did not say how the Chinese leader responded.

China has occupied Tibet since 1950. The Dalai Lama has lived in India since 1959 and based his government-in-exile in Dharamsala.

During his visit to the United States, the Dalai Lama said Tibet should remain in China for the sake of its economic development. But he added that the Tibetan people would be forced to determine their own future unless China granted them meaningful autonomy.