BEIJING: China’s foreign ministry denounced the prime minister of Tibet’s government-in-exile yesterday as a separatist who had never done a good thing in his life, indicating that Beijing is unlikely to resume talks anytime soon.
Lobsang Sangay said on Thursday he was hopeful Chinese President Xi Jinping would resume formal talks and soften China’s handling of Tibet.
But the unusually harsh comments by Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei suggested the chances of that happening were remote.
“The relevant person is 100 percent a splittist. He is the ringleader of the so-called Tibetan government-in-exile,” Hong told a daily news briefing.
The body he leads is illegal under Chinese law as it seeks to separate Tibet from China for the purposes of its independence, and is not recognised by any country, Hong added. “People can only laugh at the slander he makes about Tibet’s situation.”
Sangay made his comments before the launch of a global publicity campaign to persuade world governments to put pressure on China to restart the dialogue and change its policy on Tibet.
China has ruled Tibet since 1950, when Communist troops marched in and announced its “peaceful liberation.” Thousands of its people, including spiritual leader the Dalai Lama, fled into exile in India after a failed uprising against Chinese rule a few years later. Reuters