China steps up attack on Dalai Lama

Beijing: Ahead of the third anniversary of the riots in Tibet, China on Monday stepped up its attack against Dalai Lama vilifying him as a "wolf in monk`s robes", "double dealer" and a "secessionist chief" who is seeking separation of the region from the Communist nation.

"I had described him in those words after the March 14 riot in Lhasa in 2008 because I think he himself is a living Buddha but had done things beneath his status," said Chinese Communist Party chief of Tibet, Zhang Qingli said.

Zhang, is a CPC official known for pursuing tough policies in Tibet and earlier in the Muslim Uyghur majority, Xinjiang region, which also witnessed riots in 2009.

Dalai Lama is a "wolf in monk`s robes" Party chief of Tibet, Zhang said accusing him of seeking separation of Tibet from China.

The renewed attack on Dalai Lama came ahead of third anniversary of the riots in Tibetan provincial capital Lhasa left 18 people dead and nearly 400 wounded.

The riots were attributed to resentment of Tibetans, against the increasing settlement of the mainland Chinese in the Tibetan region.

Zhang said it was late Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai who first described the Dalai Lama as "wolf in monk`s robes" after China "foiled an armed rebellion staged" by him and his supporters in 1959.

The Dalai Lama then fled to India and created the self-declared "Tibetan government-in-exile", he said.

"I used Premier Zhou`s words to say that I object to double-dealer and ensure a correct understanding of the fact," he said.

Zhang also made comparisons between the Dalai Lama and Rebiya Kadeer, a Uygur separatist and leader of the World Uygur Congress.

"Rebiya is a housewife who has used her illegal fortune to conduct secessionist activities. She has no influence among the public," he said.

"While Dalai is a secessionist chief who fools simple believers under the guise of religion," state run Xinhua quoted him as saying.

In January, Zhang told state run China Daily that fighting Tibetan Buddhist separatists was more difficult than Uyghur militants of Xinjiang province due to variety of reasons.

Xinjiang has more than 20,000 mosques but only 8,000 Imams (clerics), where as Tibet has fewer than 1,800 Tibetan-Buddhist temples but is home to more than 46,000 monks, making monks an integral part of Tibetan life style.

Another Tibetan official Qiangba Puncog, chairman of the Standing Committee of Tibet Autonomous Regional People`s Congress asserted that `the disease` of the Dalai Lama will not exert any impact on the overall situation of Tibet.