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'Whoever asked for shelter, we have given'
April 23, 2008 21:03 IST
India on Wednesday said it wants the Tibet [Images] issue to be resolved by Tibetans and China through dialogue and not through force.
External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee said India's policy on Tibet has been consistent since 1949 when New Delhi gave recognition to the People's Republic of China with Tibet as its autonomous region.
"So far Tibet is concerned, our position has all along been that the issue has to be resolved between different sections of the people of Tibet and People's Republic of China through dialogue and not through force," he said during an interaction with journalists at an orientation programme on Parliamentary reporting.
"In 1949, when we recognised the People's Republic of China at that point of time we also recognised that Tibet was an autonomous region of the People's Republic of China," he said.
"Our giving shelter to the Dalai Lama and 1,86,000 Tibetan refugees in India is not contradictory because we believe in the basic principle if vasudhaiva kutumbakam, which means the universe is my home," he said.
"Whoever has asked for shelter, we have given -- from Dalai Lama to Taslima Nasreen [Images]," the minister said, adding that the guests have to have some responsibility.
He also hinted that Tibet and China have a long historic past besides cultural and linguistic affinities.