‘Open Chinese Society Will Help Better Understanding of Tibet Issue’

Dharamshala: His Holiness the Dalai Lama said Saturday a more open China could help its people to better understand the issue of Tibet.

“Censorship … is the source of the problem,” His Holiness the Dalai Lama said in an interview with Reuters in Beverly Hills.

“The Chinese people have no opportunity to know our issue,” said the His Holiness the Dalai Lama, who advocates “meaningful autonomy” for Tibet within China.

“Once China becomes an open society — freedom of speech, freedom of press, freedom of information — all this unnecessary fear and doubt will reduce,” His Holiness said. “That’s the real answer for this problem.”

“Americans can help in this change,” His Holiness said, adding the lack of free information has helped the Chinese government portray him as a demon.

“Do I look like a demon?” His Holiness joked, holding his fingers beside his head to make horns.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama, who was to speak on behalf of Whole Child International, an organisation that works for orphans around the world, said Western search engines like Google were important such as the free flow of information within China. He noted they had ceded to pressure from the Communist government there to limit what users can see. Google last month threatened to pull out of China if the government did not agree to stop censoring its Chinese language service.