The Dalai Lama on Wednesday said he has “no worries” about the upcoming Donald Trump presidency, and wants to meet with Trump in the future.
The exiled Tibetan spiritual leader said he thinks Trump’s actions as president could diverge from some of the more divisive words spoken during the campaign.
"Sometimes I feel during election, the candidate has more freedom to express," he said during a visit to Mongolia’s capital Ulaanbaatar. "Once they [are] elected, having the responsibility, then they have to plan their sort of vision, their works according [to] reality.”
"So I have no worries," he added.
The Dalai Lama said he expects to travel to the United States and hopes to meet with Trump sometime next year.
President Obama has hosted the Dalai Lama four times during his tenure in the White House, with the most recent meeting taking place in June. Such meetings are strongly opposed by China, whose Communist leadership views the Dalai Lama as a separatist threat hoping to break the country apart.
The Tibetan spiritual leader insists he is only seeking true autonomy for his homeland.
China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang told reporters Wednesday that the Dalai Lama’s trip to Mongolia was simply meant to damage China’s reputation in the international community.
"Instead of being in a temple to focus on practicing Buddhism, he travels around the world to meet with other foreign leaders in order to try to undermine relations between China and those countries," Geng said.
The Dalai Lama and the Mongolian monastery that organized his visit said the trip was meant solely as a religious event and had no political connotations.