The Dalai Lama offered his condolences and prayers Tuesday for the victims of the massive earthquake that hit central China, killing some 12,000 people.
''I am deeply saddened by the loss of many lives and many more who have been injured in the catastrophic earthquake that struck Sichuan province of China.
I would like to extend my deep sympathy and heartfelt condolences to those families who have been directly affected by the strong earthquake,'' the Tibetan spiritual leader said in a statement. ''I offer my prayers for those who have lost their lives and those injured.''
Kalon Tripa Samdhong Rinpoche said: "My colleagues in the Kashag, Central Tibetan Administration of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, join me to express our sense of great sorrow for the loss of lives and properties. We pray that may Three Jewels give courage and strength to the people of the affected areas to face this daunting natural calamity with ease."
The Tibetan parliament-in-exile held a special Buddhist prayer session at their headquarters in the northern Indian town of Dharmsala.The hardest hit county, Wenchuan, has more than 110,000 people and a large ethnic-Tibetan population. Wenchuan County is also home to the Wolong Nature Reserve, China's leading research and breeding base for endangered giant pandas.
Some information for this report was provided by AP and Tibet.net