Nobel laureates and celebrities have joined Archbishop Desmond Tutu in urging China to stop "verbally abusing" Tibet’s exiled spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, a human rights website said.
The South African Nobel Peace Prize laureate expressed concern in a letter at what he called the deterioration of the human rights situation in Tibet and the apparent breakdown of talks between the Chinese government and emissaries of the Dalai Lama.
The letter - posted on TheCommunity.com, an Internet site for Nobel winners and dealing with human rights issues - was opened to the public for signatures Friday.
Tutu told the Dalai Lama: "We stand with you."
"You define non-violence and compassion and goodness. Clearly China does not know you."
"It is our sincere hope that they will."
The archbishop continued by asking China to "stop naming, blaming and verbally abusing one whose life has been devoted to peace."
Mary Wald, who heads the site, said the letter would eventually be delivered to Chinese President Hu Jintao and others.
Information for this report was provided by AP.