A White House official says President Bush is expected to discuss the issue of Tibet and the Dalai Lama with Chinese President Hu Jintao, when the two leaders meet for a summit later this week.
A senior Bush administration official, who asked not to be identified, told reporters the president believes very strongly that there needs to be a dialogue between the Dalai Lama and China to resolve the long-standing issue of Tibetan independence.
President Bush leaves later Tuesday for a weeklong trip to Asia. His stops include Vietnam, where he will participate in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit along with Chinese President Hu.
China has occupied Tibet since 1951. Tibet's exiled spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, settled in Dharamsala, northern India, in 1959 following an unsuccessful uprising against Chinese rule in his homeland.