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Lithuanian parliament refuses to postpone sitting due to Dalai Lama's visit

Dalai Lama
„Scanpix“ nuotr. / Dalai Lama
Šaltinis: BNS
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Leaders of the Lithuanian Seimas have refused to satisfy a request by organizers of the Dalai Lama's visit to postpone the start of the parliament's plenary sitting on September 12 as the planned meeting of MPs and Tibet's spiritual leader coincides with the start of the plenary sitting.

Moreover, the guest will not be received by Seimas Speaker Vydas Gedvilas. Although parliamentary leaders were invited to meet the world's renowned figure at least in the Seimas lobby, they refused to do so, the Lietuvos Rytas daily reports.

"Of course, everyone knows the reasons why they are acting like that. But what does our slogan about a brave country mean then? A brave country without brave politicians?" Liberal MP Dalia Kuodytė, head of the parliamentary Tibet Support Group, commented on the Seimas leadership's decision.

Social Democratic Deputy of the Seimas, Algirdas Sysas, said such a position was determined by previous decisions by the Board of the Seimas. "According to one of them, the Seimas will not host any events unrelated to EU Council presidency during this half of the year." In his words, there cannot be any exception for the Dalai Lama.

The Dalai Lama, 78, is coming to Lithuania at the invitation of the Seimas' Tibet Support Group.

A laureate of the Nobel Peace Prize, the 14th Dalai Lama will pay a visit to Lithuania on September 12-13 in the framework of his tour of the Baltic states and the Czech Republic.

It will be his third visit to Lithuania after trips in 1991 and 2001.

The Dalai Lama used to be Tibet's political leader, but gave up the post two years ago.

Lithuania officially considers Tibet part of China. However, it joins the European Union's (EU) call for peaceful regulation of the relations between the Chinese administration and Tibet's spiritual leader Dalai Lama and his representatives.

BNS
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