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Dalai-China talks should address Tibetans' complaints: US

May 06, 2008 01:37 IST

The United States on Monday welcomed resumption of dialogue between China and representatives of the Dalai Lama and said the talks should address the Tibetan complaints about freedom of religion and cultural values.

"We believe that dialogue between the Chinese government and representatives of the Dalai Lama is the best way to address some of the fundamental issues in Tibet," White House spokesman Scott Stanzel said.

"People in Tibet feel that they are unable to freely practice their religion, freely practice some of their cultural traditions and values, so we believe that talks to discuss those issues are a good step," he said.

 The Dalai Lama's envoys and representatives of China's government on Sunday met in Shenzen for the first time since the unrest erupted in Tibet in March.

At the meeting, China did some tough talking, asking the Dalai Lama to make credible moves to stop violence and not to sabotage the Beijing Olympics to create conditions for the next round of parleys.

The two sides have had seven rounds of talks since 2002 with no substantial outcome.

The White House welcomed the dialogue, saying it hoped discussions could lead to better understanding.

"We have long encouraged the resumption of a dialogue between Chinese authorities and the Dalai Lama. We hope discussions can lead to better understanding," White House spokesman Tony Fratto said in Kansas on Sunday.

The Bush administration has been sharply critical of the manner in which Beijing handled the crisis in Tibet. Several lawmakers even urged President George W Bush to stay away from the opening ceremonies of the Olympics.

The administration has, however, sought to make a distinction between politics and the sporting event.

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