Obama pushes for China to hold dialogue with Dalai Lama's representatives

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Beijing, Nov.17 (ANI): US President Barack Obama on Tuesday urged China to resume talks with representatives of Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, at the earliest.

Addressing a joint press conference in the Great Hall of The People here, Obama said that he told Chinese President Hu Jintao during a summit-level meeting that all minorities should enjoy human rights and urged China to resume talks with the Dalai Lama's representatives.

Obama said he had also told Hu about U.S. beliefs on human rights.

Obama did not meet the Dalai Lama when he was in Washington in early October, but the latter has said that they may meet after Obama returns from China, which condemns the Buddhist monk as a separatist for demanding Tibetan self-determination.

Before his arrival in Beijing, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesman had said of Obama "He is a black President, and he understands the slavery abolition movement and Lincoln"s major significance for that movement. Lincoln played an incomparable role in protecting the national unity and territorial integrity of the United States."

The implication was that, prior to their going into exile, the Dalai Lama and his fellow members of the Tibetan monastic hierarchy had been slave-masters.

"It is an insult for the un-elected and authoritarian Chinese government to suggest that an instinctive democrat such as Abraham Lincoln would have sided with China in seeking to deny the Tibetan people their fundamental right to determine their own future," said Stephanie Brigden of Free Tibet campaign.

Obama also pledged a "positive, cooperative and comprehensive" relationship with China.

Earlier the Chinese head of state said that China and the United States will work to resolve commercial disputes and jointly oppose trade protectionism.

Hu said during a joint address to reporters that the two sides "will continue to have consultations on an equal footing to properly resolve economic and trade frictions."

Hu also stated that China and the United States agreed to continue to maintain dialogue on ending North Korea's nuclear weapons programme. (ANI)

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