(TibetanReview.net, Jul10, 2015) – The 80th birthday of Tibet’s exiled spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, was marked in the French Senate building on Jul 8 afternoon, with the event being jointly organized by the Tibet Groups in the French Senate and National Assembly. Following welcome speeches, a panel discussion was held on the Institution of the Dalai Lama and related Tibet issues.
Senator Michel Raison, the President of the Tibet Group in the French Senate, welcomed the more than 100 French MPs, scholars, journalists, Tibet supporters and Tibetans and spoke briefly about his group’s activities. A message from the Dalai Lama was read by his Brussels Representative Mr Tseten Samdup Chhoekyapa. And the group’s Vice-President, Senator André Gattolin, cited a recent public opinion poll in five European countries and the USA to show that the people in those countries had very positive image of the Dalai Lama, topping 90 percent in France, Germany and Italy.
Those who took part in the panel discussion included Dagpo Rinpoche, a Tibetan spiritual teacher who had moved to France in 1960; Ven. Marie-Stella Boussemart, President of the Buddhist Union in France; Mr Martin Brauen, an anthropologist and Tibetologist, and Mr Tseten Samdup Chhoekyapa.
Others who spoke included National Assembly member Mr Patrick Bloche and Senator Michel Rais.
The Tibet Bureau of the exile Tibetan administration organized a dinner reception for the guests in the Senate building.