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India, China Meeting Off Over Dalai Lama


Exile Tibetans shout slogans against the Chinese government during a march in New Delhi, India, November 16, 2011.

Exile Tibetans shout slogans against the Chinese government during a march in New Delhi, India, November 16, 2011.

Indian officials say a meeting between Indian and Chinese diplomats has been cancelled after Beijing objected to a scheduled speech in New Delhi by the Dalai Lama, the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader.

Authorities say India has refused China's request to cancel the Dalai Lama's address.

Diplomats from the two Asian nations were to begin meeting Monday to discuss long-standing border issues.

The Dalai Lama is set to speak Wednesday at the Global Buddhist Congregation in New Delhi.

Tensions over Tibet have risen as several Tibetan Buddhist monks and nuns have recently set themselves on fire, demanding greater religious and cultural freedom and the return of the Dalai Lama.

Thousands of Tibetans, including the Dalai Lama, fled into exile in India following an anti-Chinese uprising in 1959. China's Communist Party leadership says the Dalai Lama is intent on creating an independent Tibet, although the spiritual leader has said often that he would accept autonomy for the region within China.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and AFP.

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