Dalai Lama to visit Oslo in May

The Local
The Local - [email protected] • 18 Mar, 2014 Updated Tue 18 Mar 2014 09:21 CEST
Dalai Lama to visit Oslo in May

The Dalai Lama has announced plans to visit Norway at the start of May, adding new complications to Norway's efforts to mend its troubled relationship with China.


The exiled spiritual leader of the Tibetan people, Tenzin Gyatso, will visit Oslo from May 7th to 9th at the invitation of the Norwegian Nobel Committee,  the Karma Tashi Ling Buddhist Society and the Norwegian Tibet Society. 
As well as the members of the Norwegian Nobel Institute, he plans to meet students, young people, and Buddhist groups. 
"It is 25 years since the Dalai Lama received the Nobel prize and this will be recognized," said Wenche Stene, a spokesperson for the group organizing the visit. "He will hold two public talks where he will address the people in Norway, specifically students and young people.”
Norway's relations with China took a hit in 2010 when the Nobel Committee awarded the peace prize to Liu Xiaobo, a long-jailed Chinese dissident. Since then, Norwegian exports to China, particularly salmon, have faced frequent problems, while Norwegian citizens struggle to get visas to China. 
Last month, however, an important step forward was made in repairing relations when a Chinese businessman arranged for a set of ancient Chinese pillars to be returned  to the country from a Norwegian museum. 
As well as a spiritual leader, The Dalai Lama has headed the exiled Tibetan government ever since he fled the country in 1959, as the Chinese asserted their rule. 
When US President Barack Obama was about to meet the Dalai Lama  at the start of this year, Chinese diplomats warned that the meeting would "seriously damage" relationships with China. Obama went ahead with the meeting on February 21st.  


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