Dalai Lama thanks Switzerland for support

The Dalai Lama on Thursday met Pascale Bruderer, speaker of Switzerland’s House of Representatives, thanking her for the country’s 50 years of support for Tibet.

Bruderer told the Swiss News Agency after the meeting in canton Zurich her talk with the Buddhist spiritual leader was very interesting.

The meeting took place after a visit to the Tibetan Institute in the town of Rikon. The Swiss Tibetan association organised celebrations for around 400 guests and media representatives.

Switzerland accepted the first Tibetan refugees 50 years ago.

The Dalai Lama said Tibetans had positively integrated into Switzerland. The country’s 4,000-strong Tibetan community is the largest in Europe.

The Dalai Lama will not meet Foreign Minister Micheline Calmy-Rey during his visit, which lasts until April 11. The foreign ministry cited scheduling conflicts.

swissinfo.ch and agencies