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Pelosi meets with Dalai Lama

March 21, 2008 at 7:09 AM

DHARAMSHALA, India, March 21 (UPI) -- U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Friday met with the Dalai Lama, as Tibetans waged a determined protest against Chinese rule of their land.

Pelosi, D-Calif., accompanied by nine other U.S. lawmakers on an Indian trip, traveled to Dharamshala in northern India, where the Tibetan spiritual leader has lived in self-imposed exile since the failed Tibetan rebellion in 1959.

Pelosi was given a rousing welcome at the main temple complex, opposite the residence of the Dalai Lama, the Press Trust of India reported.

The Nobel Laureate Buddhist leader has been under constant attack from China, which accuses him of masterminding the violence in Tibet since last week. He denied the charges and appealed to world leaders to urge Chinese leaders to resume dialogue on Tibet and appealed to his follower to refrain from violence.

A local television report quoted Pelosi as saying the situation in Tibet is a challenge to the conscience of the world, which needs to speak up on the issue.

Pelosi successfully campaigned last year to award him the Congressional Gold Medal, the highest U.S. civilian award.

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