Chinese embassy criticises decision to invite Dalai Lama to Prague

18-10-2003

The Chinese embassy has issued a statement strongly criticising the decision to invite the Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, to Prague. The Dalai Lama arrived in Prague on Saturday afternoon to preside over a three-day international conference on Tibet which gets underway on Sunday. It is the first time that the gathering - sponsored by a German foundation - has been held in Prague. The embassy accused the conference - which is being held under the auspices of the Czech Senate - of supporting activities which damage Chinese national identity and hurt Czech-Chinese relations. Senator Jan Ruml, himself a former anti-Communist dissident, said the meeting was part of the democratic process and the criticism was unfounded.