Dalai Lama Focus Campaigns

Dalai Lama is to be officially received by the Federal Council

With Pope Francis and the Dalai Lama, Switzerland is hosting two religious leaders during these months. While three members of the Federal Council met Pope Francis during his stay, the Dalai Lama was never officially received in Switzerland. Together with Tibetan organizations, the Society for Threatened Peoples (GfbV) is calling for the Federal Council to show its attitude and finally officially receive its Holiness, the Dalai Lama.

On June 21, 2018, Pope Francis paid a visit to Switzerland, and in September the Dalai Lama. While Federal Councilor Ignazio Cassis, Federal President Alain Berset and Federal Councilor Doris Leuthard met three members of the Federal Council Pope Francis during his stay, the Dalai Lama has never been officially received in Switzerland. «The Dalai Lama is the religious head of many Buddhists in Switzerland. He is the recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize and a worldwide recognized spiritual personality. It must not be that the Federal Council continues to forego a formal reception for fear of possible political interventions on the part of China, "says Angela Mattli, campaign leader for minorities and discrimination at the STP, adding:" In addition, the Dalai Lama in others Countries like Germany or the USA is regularly officially received by the heads of state. Switzerland cannot be left behind here. "

As the largest Tibetan community in Europe lives in Switzerland, the Dalai Lama visits Switzerland at regular intervals. Because Tibet is not recognized by Switzerland under international law, Swiss authorities and politicians are always in a foreign policy dilemma when visiting the spiritual leader. For example, 2013 Federal Councilor Didier Burkhalter justified the refusal of a formal reception of the Dalai Lama with the argument that the Federal Council would not incite controversy and would not unnecessarily politicize the rather frequent visits of the Dalai Lama.

Together with Swiss Tibetan organizations, the GfbV launched a petition in March calling for the Dalai Lama to be formally received and to protect the fundamental rights of Tibetans in Switzerland. This is expected to be submitted in the fall.

Source: Society for Threatened Peoples

To the petition

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  1. Faltin Norbu-Madelaine

    Look what happens in southern India. The Chinese build a huge harbor, all resorts after the Ligth House are closed!

  2. Maya Mettler-Rohner

    China today remembers its great cultural and historical past. Three cardinal virtues "Ren" (sympathy), "Yi" (justice) and "Li" (morality) gained new radiance during the great Song dynasties (960-1979 AD). In ancient China, the philosopher Menzius had already called for “humane rule in the sense of social royalty” as the goal of good governance, the goal of which should be to strive for justice and everlasting peace for all.
    But how can the continued violation of the human rights of the Tibetan people be reconciled by such a noble claim to justice and morality by the now so successful Chinese leadership? In addition to the focus on China, however, it is also important to focus on the behavior of the Swiss Federal Councilors. Could we, as Swiss, not be more self-confident and express our sense of justice, as the Dalai Lama's outstanding personality has been given due respect by our government, and she has the courage to welcome him as a state guest?

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