Author Topic: Bostwana Visit of His Holiness the Dalai Lama Cancelled Owing to Exhaustion  (Read 308 times)

michaela

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People will be wondering as to what is the reason of this cancellation? Is it because of the Dalai Lama's health and exhaustion or because China has been stepping up warning to Bostwana over the Dalai Lama's visit. Because if the Dalai Lama visit Bostwana, it would be big news since this will be the Dalai Lama's maiden visit to Africa.

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Dharamsala: The Office of His Holiness the Dalai Lama confirmed the cancellation of His Holiness’ visit to Bostwana originally scheduled for August 15-20 this year.

“Earlier today, His Holiness the Dalai Lama wrote to both His Excellency Ian Khama, President of the Republic of Botswana and Dr. Susan Bauer-Wu, President of Mind & Life Institute today, expressing profound regret at having to cancel his impending visit to Botswana due to exhaustion,” read the statement on www.dalailama.com

It further mentioned “During the past few weeks, His Holiness has found that carrying out his activities has left him unusually tired. Although he had been eagerly looking forward to visiting Gaborone from August 15 to 20 and participating in the Mind & Life Conference and other engagements, His Holiness has reluctantly had to concede that his 82-year old body was telling him to rest.”

It further mentioned “Since his physicians have also advised him to avoid undertaking long journeys for the next few weeks, His Holiness will return to Dharamsala to recuperate.”

In his letter to President Khama His Holiness expressed deep admiration, respect and gratitude to him and the Government of Botswana for their unwavering principled stand to welcome him to their country, despite overwhelming pressure not to do so. His Holiness repeated his disappointment at being unable to come to Botswana at this time.

In his letter to Dr. Susan Bauer-Wu His Holiness wrote, “I was very much looking forward to visiting Botswana and participating in the Mind & Life Conference centered on discussions of Ubuntu, which is very similar to my fundamental belief that we are all interdependent and therefore need to conduct ourselves with a sense of universal responsibility. Despite my absence, I urge all of you to continue with the conference, to hold valuable discussions and publish the results. Many of you are familiar with how I think and can share those ideas with others during the proceedings.”

His Holiness requested Dr. Susan to offer apologies on his behalf to her fellow organisers, as well as all the panelists. His Holiness expressed his happiness and joy to know that the conference will remain as scheduled.

dsnowlion

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Whatever it michaela --- time is running short for the CTA in general. Dalai Lama is not getting any younger that is for sure and I would not be surprised that he needs to start looking into his succession. I do not wish anything ill towards the Dalai Lama, but I know this also means the ban on Dorje Shugden will soon come to an end also.

Why? Because for one thing, when the Dalai Lama is not around until his next incarnation, many many things can happen.... such as... the CLOSURE OF CTA. How so? Why would they need to exist? India will and does not have any obligations in maintaining them and I am sure this is the time the ties with China will strengthen even more.

Pema8

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Well lets face it... China has big connections with Africa. South Africa has denied visa to the Dalai Lama three times as states in the article!

Yet, in the end, who does benefit Africa more, the CTA or China? This answer is for sure easy!
 

http://ewn.co.za/2017/07/26/china-steps-up-warning-to-botswana-over-dalai-lama-visit
CHINA STEPS UP WARNING TO BOTSWANA OVER DALAI LAMA VISIT
China has already "clearly" expressed its point of view about the Dalai Lama's visit, Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang told a daily news briefing.

BEIJING - China stepped up its warning to Botswana on Wednesday over a planned visit by exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama next month, demanding the African nation respect China's core interests.

The Dalai Lama, reviled by Beijing as a dangerous separatist, is expected to address a human rights conference in the capital, Gaborone, on 17-19 August and will also meet Botswana's president. China is a major investor in Botswana's economy.

China has already "clearly" expressed its point of view about the Dalai Lama's visit, Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang told a daily news briefing.

"Issues relating to Tibet concern China's sovereignty and territory integrity. We demand the relevant country earnestly respect China's core interests and make the correct political decision on this matter," Lu said, using stronger language than before on the issue.

"China will not interfere in other countries' internal affairs, but will certainly not tolerate another country doing anything that harms China's core interests," he added, without elaborating.

The Dalai Lama, who fled from Tibet into exile in India in 1959 following a failed uprising against Chinese rule, has long been at loggerheads with China, which sent its troops into Tibet in 1950.

The Dalai Lama, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989, denies he is seeking independence for his Himalayan homeland. He says he is merely seeking greater rights, including religious freedom and genuine autonomy.
Visits by the Dalai Lama to foreign countries infuriate China.

It often retaliates by stopping high-level meetings or taking economic steps, like last year when it imposed new border fees following a visit by the Dalai Lama to Mongolia.

Botswana's neighbour, South Africa, has denied a visa to the Buddhist monk three times since 2009 in what opposition parties there, and Archbishop Desmond Tutu, say shows the extent of Beijing's influence over Pretoria.

China's fast-growing demand for raw materials has made it one of the biggest investors in Africa and its largest trade partner. Chinese state-owned companies have been awarded contracts to build roads, dams, power stations and airports in Botswana.

michaela

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It is strange though. If the Dalai Lama is truly exhausted, why he is still traveling around India? He has just completed a visit to New Delhi to attend World Peace & Harmony Conclave. I think the exhaustion is just an excuse to avoid diplomatic embarrassment.

dsnowlion

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It is strange though. If the Dalai Lama is truly exhausted, why he is still traveling around India? He has just completed a visit to New Delhi to attend World Peace & Harmony Conclave. I think the exhaustion is just an excuse to avoid diplomatic embarrassment.

This could probably be true as well. Whatever the case... I think their days are numbered and it is better for His Holiness to lay low for now before the world starts asking them to show their books. Especially now when more and more Tibetans are speaking up against the corrupted Central Tibetan Government. Due to all the bad they have done to their own people and causing schism and disharmony, the karma will return to them in many folds, and if do not believe in karma, then why are should they believe and follow what HH the Dalai Lama says and do? Poor CTA, soon they will become "irrelevant" just liek their office in Taiwan being closed down!

michaela

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Dear Dsnowlion

While what you said maybe true, I have a more positive thought. Maybe after the suffering that Mongolia experienced due to his visit last year, for once the Dalai Lama does not want the same thing to happen to Botswana. Botswana is not a powerful country that could withstand a prolonged economic pressure. We know for sure that the CTA will not do anything when this happened.

dsnowlion

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Dear Dsnowlion

While what you said maybe true, I have a more positive thought. Maybe after the suffering that Mongolia experienced due to his visit last year, for once the Dalai Lama does not want the same thing to happen to Botswana. Botswana is not a powerful country that could withstand a prolonged economic pressure. We know for sure that the CTA will not do anything when this happened.


Well, here's another thought. Apparently, Botswana does not "fear" CHina as much as we think according to this article... however, I do think that they may have 'quietly' not allowed Dalai Lama to visit due to economic concern. Not because of exhaustion as the Dalai Lama said and no don't think the Dalai Lama is really exhausted, or refraining from going because of the Mongolia incident. It is probably Botswana not granting him entry, hence it is to "save face".

I think Botswana is thinking long-term but not necessary because of "fear". I think they are skilful and smart and is playing their cards right with China.

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Implications of the Dalai Lama visit on Botswana-China relations
By Retlaw Matorwa

Prior to the 2010 World Cup, efforts to host the Da Lai Lama on South African soil threatened Beijing and Pretoria relations.

Acceding to pressure from Beijing, Pretoria denied the Dalai Lama the rite of passage into South Africa. In a similar attempt, Mind and Dialogue, a non-governmental organisation based in Gaborone has revealed plans to host the Dalai Lama at a conference to be held this August in Botswana.

Given the position of China on the Dalai Lama and Tibet, will Gaborone risk its bilateral relations with Beijing over the Dalai Lama?  Of what significance will the Da Lai Lama visit be on Africa-China relations should Botswana grant the Da Lai Lama rite of passage into the country?

Finally, does Africa have a say in international politics and relations. In other words is Africa able to make a stand objectively without interference from other powers?

Botswana and China have a long history of diplomatic relations dating back from January 1975.  Both countries share common views and support each other on major international issues. The two countries have enjoyed progressive bilateral trade relations, political, social exchanges and cooperation.

Botswana-China bilateral trade rose from zero thirty years ago to US$52.4m in 2004, to US$69m in 2006 and US$ 149m in 2007. According to Beijing, Botswana enjoys a stable political environment and amicable relations with its neighbouring countries. Above all, products from Botswana enjoy preferential free access to the whole of the Southern African market (www.bw.chinaembassy.org; 18 April 2006).

Over 20 Chinese companies have been involved in infrastructure development in Botswana mainly working on large infrastructure projects. These include schools, hospitals, airports, dams, stadiums and “mega projects” such as the famous Morupule B power station. China has provided US$129 million in development finance to Botswana since the Africa China cooperation forum of 2010. Botswana also donated P1 million to aid victims of the 2008 Sichuan earthquake (Memories and blessings of China Botswana relations; 2010).
However, this relationship is not without its setbacks. Recently, there has been a change of attitude towards Chinese presence in Botswana. President Ian Khama raised concerns regarding the operations of Chinese companies and their poor performance on government contracts.

Khama also complained over massive Chinese migration taking jobs from local people (Kotch 2013, p.2) resulting in Botswana tightening its visa application procedure for Asians.

Since then, there has been anecdotal evidence from the Chinese community that it has become much more difficult to obtain visas for Botswana since 2013 (Youngman, Strengthening Africa China relations, p.8). Signaling his government’s frustration and dissatisfaction with some aspects of relations with China, President Khama said “….there is no need in having a super power invest in a country, if such investment do not yield any good.” (Kotch 2013, p.2).

On the international scene, Botswana stood as an equal and not a subject of the Chinese. In the United Nations Security Council, Botswana formally and openly condemned China’s veto on the Syrian conflict in 2012. In 2016, Botswana angered China when she released a press statement insinuating that China could be meddling in the disputes over the islands of South China Sea. Referring to the South China Sea islands conflict, Botswana Foreign Affairs ministry was quoted saying “No country, no matter how big its economy or military, should impose its power over others to make claims, which may escalates tensions that could result in conflicts (the Patriot on Sunday, 23 February 2016).”

She stuck her guns at the African Union distancing herself from the unanimous decision of member states to withdraw their participation at the International Criminal Court (ICC). The above scenarios point to Botswana’s decision-making in international politics as premised on principles of right and wrong not patronage.

With regards to the Dalai Lama visit, Botswana may easily and without hesitation grant His Holiness rite of passage into the country. She may decide this route as a show of strength and her ability to make decisions as an independent sovereign state as exhibited by her resolutions at Africa and international level.
Gaborone may show her unwillingness to be bullied by so called “powers” as was in the case of Pretoria in 2010. This time around Beijing is in a catch 22 situation.

Considering the benefits accruing to China from its relationship with Botswana and its future objectives in the region, Beijing may be forced to restrain any attempt of an iron-hand on Gaborone and let the Dalai Lama be.
Botswana is the gateway for Chinese products into Southern African market. Apart from her political stability, she provides easy access to the whole of Southern African market as a result of her strategic trade alliances with neighbouring countries in the region. On the premise, China needs Botswana, a stable base to expand her influence in the region.

Beijing may express its displeasure but it may not yield to significant policy shifts towards Gaborone. If it attempts a policy shift, such change in policy may not have as much impact on Botswana. However, what would be of interest to observe is China’s reaction should Botswana go ahead and allow the Dalai Lama in their country? What precedent would China set, in terms of the diplomatic tools it may be willing to use once defied?

Whichever tools it may decide to use will determine whether they indeed treat Africans as equal or subjects? It remains to be seen, if China will use an iron fist dressed in a velvet glove or the iron fist undressed
Africa, by its very nature and historical context, must have been on the fore-front siding with the oppressed masses of the world, rebutting all forms of oppression and colonialism. By now, we should have been able to choose our friends and foe independently as sovereign states.

For Africa to do so, it must begin by addressing her economic sovereignty removing her economies from the shackles and vices of neo-colonialism.

Decisions on friendship and foe need not be influenced by her belly or allegiances but ideological or moral grounds.

To achieve her respect, Africa must urgently address strengthening its economies through regional economic communities (REC’s), increase intra-regional trade, value addition of raw materials, industrialization, research, optimum resource utilization and prioritization.

Above all, enhance her levels of democracy, accountability, resource utilization and prioritisation.

Source: https://southernafrican.news/2017/07/10/implications-of-the-dalai-lama-visit-on-botswana-china-relations/

michaela

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While the Dalai Lama has canceled his visit to Botswana due to exhaustion, the Botswana president mentioned that he is not afraid of China. Maybe it is true after all that the Dalai Lama canceled the visit due to exhaustion. The CTA must have been very worried because everybody knows that the Dalai Lama is the face of Tibetan struggle. Without him, the CTA's future looks bleak.

“We are not China’s colony” says Botswana over a controversial Dalai Lama visit

qz.com – 18 August 2017

Botswana president wants you to know that he is not intimidated by China. Ian Khama, president of the diamond-rich nation of less than two million people, stood up to the global power over the Dalai Lama’s planned visit to his county this week.

“We are not your colony,” was the money quote of Khama’s account of his diplomatic standoff with China in recent weeks.

The Dalai Lama was set to visit the capital Gaborone for Aug. 17 to 19, as part of what Botswana officials dubbed a “purely private” visit organized by the NGO Mind and Life Institute and the Botho University. Still, Khama was set to meet with the spiritual leader, riling the Chinese.

“They told me things like the ambassador may be recalled, it would damage relations between Botswana and China that they would as China engage other African states to isolate Botswana,” Khama said in the Aug. 17 edition of the Botswana Guardian newspaper.

Neither side got to test the other’s resolve after the Dalai Lama cancelled his trip late last week, citing exhaustion and a doctor’s recommendation to avoid long trips.

“So we assume he will make a speedy recovery and once he has recovered, he is of course welcome to come and visit Botswana,” Khama said defiantly. Chinese diplomats had earlier asked Botswana to “earnestly respect China’s core interests and make the correct political decision.”

Despite China’s warnings, Gaborone forged ahead with preparations for His Holiness’ visit. Gabz FM, one of the largest private radio stations in the country, ran regular advertisements for the live broadcast of the dialogue on “spirituality, science and humanity.”

In the Dalai Lama’s absence, the radio station still broadcast the three-day conference. Earlier this month, the Botswana Guardian newspaper published a glowing travel review of tourism to Tibet. The country’s media seems emboldened by the president’s stance that his country will not be bullied, sending the message that Botswana does not need China.

Botswana’s economy has stagnated as global commodity prices have dipped. The country needs to open up to more international investors that are interested in more than its diamonds. In the past, Botswana has benefitted from Chinese infrastructure development, but that usually comes with the recognition of the One China policy, and icing out Tibet. Hosting the Dalia Lama is a diplomatic and economic risk few African countries will dare.

It’s a gamble larger countries like South Africa have been too scared to take. Since Khama is stepping down next year, he won’t have to deal with the fallout of his diplomatic defiance.

http://tibet.net/2017/08/we-are-not-chinas-colony-says-botswana-over-a-controversial-dalai-lama-visit/