Dalai Lama rolls into Toronto this October
Toronto has two tidbits of news to celebrate for the Dalai Lama today: his 75th birthday and the announcement that he will be visiting in October. The fall visit will feature a series of speeches at the Rogers Centre, as well as a much-anticipated event at the grand opening of the Tibetan Canadian Cultural Centre on October 23. The last time the Dalai Lama was here was in 2007, after he became an honourary Canadian citizen.
The autumn visit will be an auspicious time, but geopolitical concerns are never far away when it comes to the Dalai Lama. The Chinese ambassador to Canada lambasted the international media for supporting the Dalai Lama after reports of violence in Tibet were broadcast. It’ll be interesting to see what the Dalai Lama has to say to Canada, since Michaëlle Jean and Michael Ignatieff have both been making diplomatic rounds in China. Plus, Stephen Harper had a very productive meeting with Chinese President Hu Jintao just before the G20 summit. Canada seems to have made nice with China after a rather tepid period, but judging from past encounters with the spiritual leader, we bet they won’t stay that way forever.