China Lashes Out at Dalai Lama, Other Olympic Critics བོད་སྐད།

China on Thursday defended its policies in Tibet and its relations with the government of Sudan, saying it was wrong for activists to seize on the issues as way to pressure Beijing ahead of the Olympic Games in August.

China routinely vilifies the Dalai Lama, a recent interview with British broadcaster ITV News in which he reportedly gave his blessing for protests at the Olympics put him in the focus again.

According to a transcript circulated by pro-Tibetan groups, the Dalai Lama said protests could remind the Chinese public of government policies he says are eroding the region's traditional Buddhist culture.

The Dalai Lama said Chinese repression in Tibet had gotten "certainly worse" since China was awarded the Olympics in 2001.

"The goal of all of his schemes is to split the motherland, sabotage ethnic unity, sabotage China's relations with other nations and interfere with the Olympic Games," Jiang said.

"So he is in no way a religious or spiritual leader. He is purely a general leader bent on pursuing separatism and sabotaging national unity," she said.

China has also been angered by a series of overseas visits by the Dalai Lama, who leads an India-based exile government. Beijing's relations with Germany were strained for months after Chancellor Angela Merkel received the Dalai Lama in September.

Information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.