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Commentary: Washington should stop playing 'Tibet card'

Editor: zhangrui 丨Xinhua

06-16-2016 08:22 BJT

BEIJING, June 16 (Xinhua) -- Disregarding the Chinese government's strong opposition, U.S. President Barack Obama met with the 14th Dalai Lama behind closed doors at the White House on Wednesday.

This unwise behavior has broken the solemn promise of the United States not to support Tibet's independence, seriously jeopardized China-U.S. relations, and deeply hurt the Chinese people's feelings.

As we all know, the U.S. government has explicitly acknowledged the one-China policy, admitting Tibet is an inseparable part of China, and not recognizing the so-called "exiled government of Tibet."

The Dalai Lama has been campaigning for Tibet's independence around the world under the guise of religion for years. No matter with what dashing identity and charming words and behavior, the Dalai Lama's goal of dividing China is obvious.

The Chinese government urges all countries and governments not to offer maneuvering space for the Dalai Lama, let alone do things which could lead to strong objection from the Chinese people.

The Tibet issue concerns China's sovereignty and territorial integrity, which involves the core interests of China. It is common sense that not meeting with the Dalai Lama is a benchmark for governments not supporting Tibet's independence.

The Obama administration knows this only too well, yet it did it anyway, sending wrong signals. By meeting with the Dalai Lama, the U.S. government has broken its own promise and thrown away its political credibility, which is an extremely rash and irresponsible act.

Wednesday's tete-a-tete was Obama's fourth meeting with the 14th Dalai Lama since he took office as U.S. president.

Undoubtedly, Obama has his own calculation by choosing to meet the Dalai Lama before his term expires in January 2017.

The White House has been betting on both sides as it solemnly affirms its stance of recognizing Tibet as an inalienable part of China and its adherence to the one-China policy on the one hand while repeatedly meeting with the 14th Dalai Lama, spiritual leader of the "clique" attempting to separate Tibet from China, to court the U.S. hardliners on the other.

This flip-flopping shows the White House's narrow-mindedness and outdated way of thinking that still seeks to contain China by playing the "Tibet card."

The Tibet issue is China's internal affair. No foreign country has the right to interfere. Supporting Tibet's independence is a clear interference in China's internal affairs and is in gross violation of the norms of international relations.

Playing the "Tibet card" shows the U.S. government is overdrawing its political credit and international prestige.

The favorable status quo of China-U.S. relations should not be jeopardized, and any meddling in Tibet-related issues is doomed to fail.

The United States should show its sincerity by boosting mutual trust with China through concrete deeds, by respecting the core interests and major concerns of China, by desisting from making irresponsible moves and eating its own words, and by promoting the sustainable, healthy and stable development of bilateral ties.

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