The Jamestown Foundation: the Dalai Lama Card Reappears in Sino-Mongolian Relations

The mid-November 2011 surprise four-day visit to Mongolia of the 14th Dalai Lama reignited simmering Chinese worries about how the Tibetan Buddhist spiritual leader is using and is being used by its northern neighbor and important mineral trade partner. From China’s perspective, the Dalai Lama’s Mongolian visit, appearing in the guise of a purely private matter to promote his teachings, actually is intertwined with Northeast Asian mineral resources politics as well as interference in Tibetan affairs—thus a deliberate ratcheting up of anti-Chinese sentiment along its borders. From the Dalai Lama’s perspective, who has made eight trips to Mongolia (the last in 2006), that nation increasingly is seen as an answer to how to handle the sticky question of his own succession and how to wrest it from the control of the Chinese Government. For over a year, rumors have persisted inside Mongolia that a new reincarnation might be found among genetically-Tibetan-blooded Mongols in the country’s Gobi provinces. The Dalai Lama reportedly wanted his successor chosen while he is still alive—an impossibility—and that the boy had been selected from among 300 children from Nepal, India, Mongolia and Kalmykia Russia (Undesnii Shuuden, September 15, 2011). Although the Mongolian boy’s name and location were not mentioned, the same newspaper correctly predicted the November visit. To read the full article, click herethe Dalai Lama Card Reappears in Sino-Mongolian Relations

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