Accessibility links

Breaking News

The Dalai Lama Receives the Democracy Service Medal བོད་སྐད།

The Dalai Lama, the exiled spiritual leader of Tibet, spoke Friday before a large audience at the Library of Congress as he continued a visit to Washington where on Thursday he was received at the White House.

In the Coolidge Auditorium of Library of Congress saying that he considers this as a recognition of his "small contribution to the betterment of six billion human beings."

The Dalai Lama said that the time has come for the Chinese Communist Party to -- in his words -- "retire with grace." He said he believes the party has no popular support and no solid ideology.

He acknowledged that his comments will not be well-received by China's leaders.

China accuses that National Endownment of Democracy is an organization that tries to overthrow communist government. However, Bhuchung Tsering of International Campaign for Tibet said he believes that the only reason the Chinese government complains about it is because the authorities don't want to give up their power.

"I think this is because of their narrow policy and not caring for the welfare of future of Chinese people and China as a country." Mr. Tsering said if the Chinese government really cared for the long term benefit of Chinese people, the Dalai Lama's effort would be beneficial for them.

Robbie Barnett, the director of Modern Tibetan Studies at Columbia, said, "The Dalai Lama hasn't achieved a perfect democratic system in exile" but that he helps people to understand that religion and democracy has to coexist in every country.

The president of NED said the Dalai Lama tried to do democratic reform in Tibet and established a democratic system "almost as soon as" he arrived in India.