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Dalai Lama lunches with Slovak President, meets with official parliamentary delegation

His Holiness the Dalai Lama meeting with President of Slovakia Andrej Kiska over lunch in Bratislava, Slovakia on October 16, 2016. (Photo courtesy/Jeremy Russell/OHHDL)
His Holiness the Dalai Lama meeting with President of Slovakia Andrej Kiska over lunch in Bratislava, Slovakia on October 16, 2016. (Photo courtesy/Jeremy Russell/OHHDL)

(TibetanReview.net, Oct18, 2016) – Visiting Slovakia’s capital Bratislava on the third leg of his five-nation tour of Europe, Tibet’s exile spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, on Oct 16 had lunch with the country’s president Mr Andrej Kiska, received an official Slovakian Parliamentary delegation, addressed students at the Comenius University, delivered a public talk to an audience of 4,000, and met briefly with a group of 240 Tibetans who had come to see him mostly from neighbouring Austria.

The parliamentary delegation, which called on him in his hotel in the morning, included Ms Lucia Nicholson, Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly; Mr Frantisek Sebej, Chairman of Foreign Affairs Committee; Mr Martin Poliacik, member of the parliament’s Tibet Group and Mr Pal Csaky, MEP and former Deputy Prime Minister of Slovakia.

Then, following an interview with Lubomir Bajanik of Slovak TV, the Dalai Lama visited the Comenius University where he was welcomed by Rector Karol Micietal and introduced by Prof Martin Slododnik before addressing a 250-strong audience.

Emphasizing that we need to focus on the oneness of the seven billion human beings on this earth, the Dalai Lama explained that to compensate for the inadequacies of modern education it was possible to cultivate universal values on the basis of our common experience as human beings, our common sense and scientific findings.

The lunch with President Andrej Kiska took place, after the university progamme, in the Altitude Restaurant set on a television tower high above the city.

Later in the afternoon, Mr Martin Butora, Advisor to the President, introduced the Dalai Lama to an audience of 4,000 who packed the National Tennis Centre. The Dalai Lama explained to the crowd his commitments to promote a happier and more peaceful world; to encourage people to see that despite different philosophical points of view, different customs and different history, all the world’s major religious traditions convey a common message of the importance of warm-heartedness, contentment, forgiveness and tolerance; and to work for the welfare of the Tibetan people and to encouraging the protection of Tibet’s language, culture and natural environment.

He later answered questions from the audience.

After the National Tennis Centre event, the Dalai Lama met briefly with 240 Tibetans who had come to see him, mostly from neighbouring Austria, back in his hotel. He reminded them that as refugees they represented the six million Tibetans in Tibet; that they should not merely recite prayers but also study what the Buddha’s teachings meant; and he asked them to ensure that their children learnt Tibetan.

The Dalai Lama was headed for the Czech capital Prague on Oct 17. The Dalai Lama earlier visited Latvia and Switzerland. After Prague he visits Italy before returning to his exile home in India.

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