Could you imagine referendums on contact with the Dalai Lama?

In which countries could it be possible with today's practices? (I think perhaps Switzerland?).

Is it likely that it could be possible in other countries if they move to more direct democracy as advocated by many?

How would China likely react compared to a government deciding to meet His Holiness?

I imagine the question could be something like "Should the government have official contact with the Dalai Lama or other representatives of the CTA?"


Monday: I assume of course it would be bundled with other votes.

closed as too broad by Bobson, bilbo_pingouin, user 1, Sam I am Sep 19 '16 at 14:37

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  • What exactly can meeting with him achieve? – Dylan Czenski Sep 9 '16 at 14:09
  • For me its mostly a moral thing. But judging by the effort China is putting into it is important. – Olav Sep 9 '16 at 17:04
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    Why do you think any country would need referendum to meet or contact with him? – Rathony Sep 10 '16 at 20:48
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    I think referendums are better for real issues, such as Brexit – Dylan Czenski Sep 11 '16 at 1:02
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    @Olav - What makes you think "governments are out of step with the public opinion"? Do most people even care? – Bobson Sep 12 '16 at 10:35

No, I seriously could not imagine such a referendum, because for most governments the Dalai Lama is already a very welcome guest.

Here he is with US President Obama: Dalai Lama with President Obama

Here with Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany: Dalai Lama with Chancellor Merkel

He is holding hands with Prince Charles, future king of the United Kingdom and 11 other countries: Dalai Lama with Prince Charles

And Nelson Mandela: Dalai Lama with Nelson Mandela

Even the competition isn't afraid to be seen with him in public. Here he meets with Pope John Paul II:

Dalai Lama with Pope John Paul II

And I could post far more images of him with many more heads of states and governments.

Most of those countries where the Dalai Lama is not welcome are countries which do not value democracy a lot, so these are not the countries which would hold a referendum on such a matter.

But even when we assume there is a country which is democratic enough to allow a referendum on diplomatic affairs and doesn't want official contact with the Dalai Lama, what would such a referendum achieve? "Official Contact" doesn't mean much. Just talking with the Dalai Lama does not mean one has to listen to what he says. It's hard to mobilize the public to vote in a referendum when it is clear to them that it won't have any tangible effect on their life.

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    Actually more and more countries are not meeting with the Dalai Lama. Including UK and Germany. And in South Africa they won't even let him in. – Olav Sep 9 '16 at 7:48
  • @olav: ths is more likely to due to the increasing political influence that China has given the way its transfomed its economy. – Mozibur Ullah Sep 9 '16 at 21:53
  • I don't agree for most governments the Dalai Lama is already a very welcome guest.. And I don't think the question is on-topic. How can you possibly say Most of those countries where the Dalai Lama is not welcome are countries which do not value democracy a lot. Do you have any reference to support your claim? – Rathony Sep 10 '16 at 20:35

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