The chairman of the Tibetan Cabinet, Kalon Tripa Samdhong Rinpoche, on May 9, 2003 briefed members of the German Parliament’s group for Tibet about the current status of Sino-Tibetan contact.

According to a report from the Tibet Bureau in Geneva, Prof. Samdhong Rinpoche participated in the first meeting of the German Parliamentary Group for Tibet in the German Parliament.

The meeting was the first formal discussion of the Tibet Forum after it was re-established in April this year following the September 2002 elections in Germany, the report says. There are over 20 MPs in the Tibet Forum representing SDP, CDU/CSU, FDP and Green Party. MPs as well as staff members of MPs representing all major political parties of Germany were present at the meeting.

Prof. Samdhong Rinpoche briefed the German parliamentarians about the current situation in Tibet and the status of the contacts between Beijing and Dharamsala. He also thanked them for their continued support for Tibet and for having re-established the Tibet Forum.

“It was a good opportunity for our supporters in the German Parliament to have this meeting with Kalon Tripa,” said Mr. Chhime R. Chhoekyapa, Representatives of H. H. the Dalai Lama at Tibet Bureau in Geneva. “We are satisfied that the first formal meeting of the Tibet Forum coincided with alon Tripa’s visit to Berlin,” he added.

During this European visit, Kalon Tripa Prof. Samdhong Rinpoche attended the opening of the ICT-D office in Berlin and was also in Switzerland and Italy. In Rome, he met with Margarethia Boniver, Undersecretary of State for Foreign Affairs of the Italian Government and members of the Italian Parliamentary Group for Tibet and other parliamentarians. In a panel discussion organized in the city on Autonomy for Tibet and Democracy in China, Prof. Rinpoche and seven Italian parliamentarians spoke.

Mr. Lamberto Dini, the Vice-President of the Italian Senate, Mr. Alfredo Bondi, Vice-President of the Chamber of Deputies of the Italian Parliament and Mr. Walter Veltroni, the Mayor of Rome, also received Prof. Samdhong inpoche.

Before arriving in Rome Kalon Tripa visited the Autonomous Province of South Tyrol on the invitation of its President Dr. Luis Durnwalder and the European Academy.