Over 70 people, including His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s Representative to Australia, Mr Sonam Norbu Dagpo, Chinese liaison officer Ms Dadon, Chinese scholars, writers, students, democracy activists from Sydney and Adelaide, and former secretary at the Chinese embassy in Australia, attended the meeting.
The event, which includes interactive debate on the theme “peace and harmony between Chinese and Tibetans” aims to share ideas and remove biased views and misunderstandings on both sides.
The president of the Chinese-Tibetan Friendship Association, Ma Lian Qian, said: “The Chinese government not only brutally suppressed the Tibetan people’s peaceful protests in 2008, but also fomented serious discord between the two communities. In order to have an interactive free exchange of ideas and way of thinking from both sides, we have organised a new way to achieve that in the form of this cultural exchange meeting.”
The participants held interactive discussion and shared ideas on wide-range of Tibet related issues, such as religion and culture, human rights and environmental issues in Tibet, democracy in China and the dialogue process on Tibet.
The question and answer session during the experts’ talk has helped in promoting the Chinese people’s understanding of the truth about the Tibetan culture and the real situation in Tibet. It has also helped in cultivating trust among Tibetans to learn about China’s culture and strengthening co-ordination with its people, the office of Tibet said.
The next meeting is scheduled to be held in Melbourne in 2011.