Slovakia’s President Andrej Kiska joins Lady Gaga, Barack Obama and Selena Gomez as the latest in a long line of world figures who have pissed China off by meeting with the Dalai Lama.
Yesterday, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying was asked at a regular press conference about President Kiska having lunch on Sunday in his “personal capacity” with the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader in Bratislava. Hua said that the meeting was “in violation of the one-China policy Slovakia pledged to uphold,” adding that “China is firmly opposed to this move and will react accordingly.” She continued:
The 14th Dalai has long been engaged in anti-China separatist activities and conspiring to sever Tibet from China. The Chinese side is firmly opposed to Dalai’s undertaking of anti-China separatist activities in any country in any capacity. We are also against officials from any country engaging with him in any form.
Clinging obstinately to a wrong course, the Slovak President undermines China’s core interests and sabotages the political foundation for China-Slovakia relations. China urges the Slovak side to see through the anti-China separatist nature of the Dalai clan, respect China’s core interests and major concerns, hold fast to the one-China policy, and take effective measures to remove the fallout of this wrong act so that China-Slovakia relations can resume sound and steady development.
Currently on his European tour, the Dalai Lama visited Slovakia from October 15th to 17th, where he gave a sold-out public lecture on “Secular Ethics”, took questions from university students and dined with the president.
According to The Slovak Spectator, following their meal together, Kiska wrote on Facebook: “I had the chance to meet the Dalai Lama again on this day, but for the first time as a president. I spoke with the supreme Tibetan spiritual leader about the need for understanding among people; about the fact that all religions are similar if they’re founded on love, forgiveness and empathy.”
While all that talk may seem innocent enough, Beijing claims that the Dalai Lama is a “wolf in monk’s robes” bent on Tibetan separation from China. Along with banning musicians who meet with the Tibetan spiritual leader from performing in the country, China also tries its best to dissuade world leaders from meeting with His Holiness.
For his part, the Dalai Lama maintains that he wants genuine autonomy for Tibet, not outright independence. He also says that when he dies, he probably won’t come back, further pissing China off.
[Images via Facebook / dalailama.com]