Merkel and other European Leaders Urged to Raise Tibet Issue at ASEM བོད་སྐད།

In the course of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) in Beijing this week, German Chancellor Merkel and other European leaders are urged to press Chinese President Hu Jintao for tangible results from the dialogue between the Dalai Lama's representatives and Chinese officials.

A new round of dialogue between the Dalai Lama's envoys and Chinese officials are scheduled to take place at the end of this month. Earlier in June, Merkel asked Hu to push for a successful outcome to Sino-Tibetan talks when the two met in Japan during the Group of Eight Summit.

Chinese President Hu Jintao praised the state of relations with Germany during a meeting with Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday, suggesting ties between the economic powers had been repaired since a spat over the Dalai Lama last year.

Chancellor Merkel said during her meeting with President Hu on Friday. ``I believe that the most important thing is dialogue.''

``I have again stated very clearly that a meeting with the Dalai Lama is a meeting about cultural autonomy,'' she said. ``I believe we have come one step closer to mutual understanding.''

Hu said improvements in the relationship were ``hard-earned and should be treasured by both sides,'' the official Xinhua News Agency reported, without mentioning the Tibetan spiritual leader.

The Dalai Lama has said repeatedly he is seeking greater autonomy for the Himalayan region, not independence.