Minister Dermot Ahern To Meet With Tibet Group
The Minister for Foreign Affairs Dermot Ahern T.D. is to meet with representatives of the Tibet Support Group-Ireland in the coming days to discuss continuing concerns about the situation in Tibet and neighbouring provinces.
The situation in Tibet was raised at an Informal Meeting of EU Foreign Ministers in Slovenia at the weekend.
Minister Ahern said: “I deplore the loss of life that has occurred in Tibet and neighbouring Provinces in China. Again I call for maximum restraint on all sides and for the release of imprisoned peaceful protesters. It is important that the facts of what has occurred are established and, in this regard, strongly urge the Chinese authorities to allow free access by the media and independent observers.
“I have long advocated the value of dialogue between the Chinese Government and representatives of the Dalai Lama as the best means to address issues relating to Tibetan religious and cultural identity. Now, more than ever, I believe that this dialogue should be stepped up.
“I stressed these points in discussions on the situation in Tibet with my EU colleagues at the weekend. They have also been conveyed to the Chinese Ambassador here and my Department has remained in close contact with the Chinese Embassy on these issues. We have in particular stressed to the Embassy the high degree of public concern in Ireland about the situation in Tibet. I hope my meeting with representatives of the Tibet Support Group – Ireland during the coming week will be fruitful.”
31st March 2008