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Sarkozy-Dalai Lama meeting undermines political credibility
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14:58, December 08, 2008

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President Nicolas Sarkozy of France went ahead with a private meeting with Dalai Lama in Warsaw, Poland on Dec. 6 in a move that drew an angry protest from China.

However, the Elysee Palace said in a communiqué that the meeting was private, and did not have any special intentions.

France, who now holds the rotating presidency of the 27-nation bloc the European Union, and leaders from China and Europe had planned to meet there for a summit. Although China demanded several times over the last week that Sarkozy cancel the meeting saying such an activity could not only hurt the feelings of the Chinese, but also strain Sino-France ties, and even the relations with EU. The French president, by playing down China’s protest, went on with a private meeting with Dalai Lama in such a special time, in such a special place and such a way that was guaranteed to cause offence. Is there any one who could believe the meeting was not specially intended and private? Yes, the idiots who were following the Elysee Palace’s trick.

Political figures like Sarkozy in the west will never understand the sensitivity of Tibet issue, nor can they understand why China opposes any forms of separatist activities by the Dalai Lama in any countries. China also opposes any foreign leader’s contact with the ousted Tibetan spiritual leader. Regardless of Beijing’s strong protest, Sarkozy stubbornly carried out the meeting, in a move that was thought to be provocative and dangerous. He must pay for it.

The political farce in Poland definitely reminds us of one scene before the Beijing Olympics. Sarkozy said he might not attend the opening ceremony depending on China’s handling of the situation in Tibet. However, it was not until July that he decided he would go when he found he was subject to the criticism of the international community, and he also attended the Asia-Europe Summit in Beijing thereafter. Is the meeting with Dalai Lama a hint that Sarkozy will play that old trick again? And once again show us that he is inconsistent with his policies?

Things keep getting harder and harder for Sarkozy in France. Sluggish economy, rising unemployment and low public support has made Sarkozy focus more on the issues of human rights and Tibet. He campaigned on winning domestic support at the cost of harming fundamental interests of the Chinese people. But it turned out that he put the interests of the French people and even the EU in danger. As president of the presiding EU country, Sarkozy has made his reputation from constantly changing his mind. His actions will doubtlessly arouse suspicion about his political quality, and in a large sense France’s national image will also be greatly affected.

By People's Daily Online

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