Beijing : China on Saturday warned that it would consider as a “major offence” if any country or foreign leader hosts or meets the Dalai Lama as it deems the Tibetan spiritual leader a “separatist” trying to split Tibet from it.

China routinely protests world leaders meeting the Dalai Lama. It also makes it mandatory for all the foreign governments to recognise Tibet as part of China to have diplomatic relations with Beijing. It also protested that when the Tibetan spiritual leader was permitted by India to visit various areas in the north-east, including Arunachal Pradesh, this year. The Dalai Lama fled Tibet in 1959 after a failed uprising against the Chinese rule in his Himalayan homeland. He has been living in India in exile since then.

“Any country or any organisation of anyone to accept to meet with the Dalai Lama in our view is a major offence to the sentiment of the Chinese people,” said Zhang Yijiong, Executive Vice Minister of the United Front Work Department of the ruling Communist Party of China (CPC).

“Also, since they have committed to recognising China as a sole legitimate government representing China it contravenes their attempt, because it is a serious commitment,” Zhang said on the sidelines of the once-in-a-five-year congress of the CPC.

Zhang said China would not accept the arguments of foreign countries and leaders to meet the 82-year-old Dalai Lama as a religious leader.

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