Rome, 11 March: The Mayor of Rome Mr. Giovanni Alemanno endorsed His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s call for independent international fact finding missions to access the true situation in Tibet.
The Tibetan Community in Italy organised the 52nd Anniversary of the Tibetan National Uprising Day at Ara Pacis Auditorium in Rome yesterday. Over 20 Tibet related organisations including the Tibet Group in the Italian Parliament supported in organising the event. The City of Rome, Provincial and Regional Government of Rome were the Patrons of the event.
The Mayor’s Diplomatic Counsellor read the Mayor’s address. The Mayor’s wife Mrs. Isabella Rauti also addressed the gathering as the Vice-President of Inter Group for Tibet at Lazio from central Italy. Also Mr. Matteo Macacci, the President of the Tibet Group in the Italian Parliament addressed the gathering.
“It is an honour for me to participate in this event to commemorate the 52nd Anniversary of the peaceful uprising in Lhasa. This was the beginning of the long exile of the Dalai Lama an honorary citizen of Rome from February 9, 2009,” said the Mayor.
He also said that the present situation in Tibet is deteriorating and repression on the Tibetan people is constant.
“As His Holiness addressed today (in Dharamsala), it is important – as in the 70s and 80s – to send international independent delegates and representatives of the European Parliament to access the true condition in Tibet,” said Mayor Alemanno.” We must fully support this.”
He called on the Italian Government to support the dialogue between the Chinese and Tibetan representatives to achieve mutually satisfactory solution that respects China’s sovereignty and a genuine autonomy for Tibet and its people.
In his conclusion remark, the Mayor said “I want to assure you today that Rome will continue to give voice to the Dalai Lama and our Tibetan friends… Finally, I extend my sincere greetings to the Dalai Lama and our Tibetan friends: know that you can always count on Rome.”
The Mayor’s address also welcomed His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s Representative Mr Tseten Samdup Chhoekyapa to Rome.
Mr. Chhoekyapa thanked the Mayor for his support and said, “Today we are commemorating a sad but a very important event in Tibetan history.”
“We Tibetans are not against the Chinese government or people. What we are against is the Chinese government’s policies that undermine the Tibetan religion, culture and language,” he said. “We must resolve the Tibetan issue through dialogue which brings mutual benefit to the Tibetans and the Chinese people.”
In the morning, the Tibetan Community in Italy organised a rally in front of the Chinese embassy in Rome. Young Tibetans living in Milan drove seven hours at night to take part in the rally in the morning and returned the same night.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s 10th March statement was read by Mrs. Kalsang Dolker, the President of the Tibetan Community in Italy in front of the Chinese embassy.