The Special Envoy of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Lodi Gyari, met former Tibetan political prisoner Takna Jigme Sangpo near Washington, D.C., on July 15, 2002.
Gyari formally welcomed Takna on behalf of the Dalai Lama and presented him with communication from Prof. Samdhong Rinpoche, Chairman of the Tibetan Cabinet.
Gyari and Samdhong Rinpoche were attending the Conference of Tibetan Associations in North America in Minneapolis when Takna arrived in the United States on July 13.
Gyari had spoken to Takna by telephone on Saturday soon after he landed in Chicago. They discussed Takna’s physical condition and medical treatment. Takna will seek a complete medical examination beginning on July 16.
Takna inquired about His Holiness the Dalai Lama and requested that Gyari forward a scarf offering to the Dalai Lama.
He said that he was aware of the international campaign that was launched on his behalf, largely due to Voice of America (VOA), Radio Free Asia (RFA) and Voice of Tibet (VOT) broadcasts into Tibet. He has already given Tibetan-language interviews to both VOA and RFA.
He clarified that his family name was *Takna (“Tiger’s Nose” in Tibetan) and not Tanak. He also said that he was 74 this year.
John Ackerly, President of International Campaign for Tibet (ICT), and Bhuchung Tsering, ICT Director, also met with on Takna Jigme Sangpo on July 15. They presented a photographic book on Tibet to him and also offered ICT’s assistance in whatever capacity is needed.