Dalai Lama Reps Visit China for Peace Talks
Trip marks first contact between sides since violent protests began
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted May 3, 2008 9:30 AM CDT
In this April 6, 2008 file photo, a police officer tackles a demonstrator during the Olympic torch relay in London. Pro-Tibet protests have mixed with pro-China backlash during the torch's journey.   (AP Photo/Yui Mok, Pool, File)
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(Newser) – Representatives for the Dalai Lama head to China today for talks on restoring peace between the two sides, the BBC reports. The visit marks the first contact between the exiled leader and Chinese officials since pro-Tibet protests turned violent in March. The envoys will discuss the Dalai Lama’s “deep concerns about the Chinese authorities' handling of the situation” and work toward peace, his office said.

Meanwhile, Chinese state media launched fresh attacks on the Dalai Lama today. “Patriotic people of Tibet vehemently denounce the litany of crimes” he and his followers have committed, one paper said. Dalai Lama loyalists staged “a bloody violent event—their last bout of madness,” it added. The spiritual leader has rejected China’s claims, saying he wants more autonomy but not independence.