China claims right to select next Dalai Lama: Present Dalai Lama may find successor in India

Against the backdrop of celebrations to mark the countdown to the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the Chinese government has angered religious- freedom activists by attempting to assert greater influence over the choice of a successor to the Dalai Lama.

“The so-called reincarnated living Buddha without government approval is illegal and invalid,” Beijing said in a 14-part order purporting to regulate the reincarnation of Tibet’s Buddhist leaders.

Tibetan Buddhists believe that their lamas are reincarnated from departed lamas dating back to the 12th century.

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