Wednesday, May 21, 2008

25,000 show solidarity with Dalai Lama in Berlin – Dalai Lama concludes Germany visit

Berlin, 20 May 2008 – Concluding his 5-day visit in Germany, His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama attended a mass rally organised by the Tibet Initiative Germany (TID) and the Association of Tibetans in Germany (VTD) with support from the German Society for Threatened Peoples (GfbV) in Berlin yesterday. 25,000 people from all over Germany and the neighbouring countries showed their solidarity with the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan people in its most difficult hour, supported by numerous artists and speakers. The Dalai Lama’s attendance at the rally in front of the Brandenburg Gate makes it a historical event.

Wolfgang Grader, chairman of the TID, says: “We are very grateful for the strong support by the people in Germany since the beginning of the current crisis in Tibet, summiting in the Berlin rally. The atmosphere and the size of the crowd supporting the Tibetan cause today were overwhelming.” In his speech the Dalai Lama emphasized that the Tibet movement is not pro-Tibet and anti-China, but rather pro-justice. He expressed his wish that while the 20th century was one of bloodshed, the 21st century should be one of dialogue. The 7th round of talks between Beijing and the representatives of the Dalai Lama is scheduled for the second week of June.
Since 16 May the Dalai Lama has held four public talks on Peace and Human Rights and met with leading politicians. Among them were the German Federal Minister for Development Heidemarie Wieczorek-Zeul (SPD), President of the German Bundestag Norbert Lammert (CDU), the Committee for Foreign Affairs of the Bundestag, the chair of the Green Party Claudia Roth as well as representatives of the Liberal Party (FDP).

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