His Holiness the Dalai Lama and political leader of the Central Tibetan Administration Sikyong Lobsang Sangay have written to congratulate President Barack Obama on his election victory.
In a letter to the President, the Dalai Lama wrote of his hope that President Obama would tackle global problems of common concern, “you inspired the world with a call to take responsibility for the problems we face as global citizens… I hoped you would be able to shape a more peaceful world, bearing in mind the poverty, injustice and deprivation suffered by billions of people. The need to address these issues remains pressing today.”
The Dalai Lama also addressed the situation in Tibet, thanking President Obama for “your steady encouragement of our efforts to find a peaceful resolution to the problems in Tibet. I am very appreciative of your support for our Middle Way Approach…I hope your Administration will be able to take further steps to encourage a mutually acceptable solution.”
While it has been customary for the Dalai Lama to congratulate in writing American political leaders on their elections, the Sikyong letter carries the new political authority invested in his office following the Dalai Lama’s devolution of power in the exile government in 2011. Sikyong Lobsang Sangay wrote in his letter to President Obama, “Under your leadership, Tibetans have also enjoyed your warm and sincere support… As you have promised, ‘America, the best is yet to come.’ We appeal to your Administration to use its good offices to envision a ‘brighter and better’ future for Tibet, as well.”
Lobsang Sangay also expressed appreciation for the Obama Administration’s Tibet work during his first term, including efforts by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Under Secretary and Special Coordiantor for Tibet Maria Otero, and U.S. Ambassador to China Gary Locke who recently visited Tibetan areas where self-immolations have occurred.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s statement can be found here. The Central Tibetan Administration statement can be found at here.