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Dalai Lama Envoy Says Olympics Limit China Talks


An envoy to the Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, says he will not know how sincere China is about negotiations until after the Beijing Olympics.

Lodi Gyari says there is a widespread belief the Chinese are only meeting the Dalai Lama's representatives because of China's need to project a positive international image ahead of the Olympics.

Lodi Gyari says his Chinese counterparts repeated accusations during the most recent talks Tuesday and Wednesday, that the Dalai Lama wants to sabotage next month's Olympic Games. He said he rejected the accusations and told his Chinese counterparts that if they are not serious about dialogue, the talks will amount to a waste of time.

He says the latest round of talks with China were among the most difficult sessions held so far. Another meeting is expected in October.

Lodi Gyari said in a statement after the meeting that Chinese negotiators failed to take what he called "any tangible steps." And he said the Chinese declined to issue a joint statement with the Dalai Lama's envoys following the meeting.

The Dalai Lama has voiced support for the Beijing Olympics, and denies Chinese allegations that he wants independence for Tibet.

The Chinese and Tibetan envoys met Tuesday and Wednesday in Beijing. It was their first meeting since May, and followed calls from world leaders, including U.S. President George Bush, to resume their talks.

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