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Nepal bans Dalai Lama birthday celebrations

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Nepal bans Dalai Lama birthday celebrations

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Nepali authorities have banned exiled Tibetans from celebrating the birthday of their spiritual leader the Dalai Lama, as they fear the gatherings could turn into an anti-Chinese rally.
 
Hundreds of riot police were out in force to prevent the Tibetans from entering a school in the north of Kathmandu where the celebrations were due to take place.
 
Police also arrested three men who were trying to hold a prayer meeting on the street.  According to sources a brief scuffle broke out but nobody was hurt.
 
Nepali fears were probably substantiated as Tibetan gatherings often turn into anti-Chinese protests, where they shout slogans demanding an end to Chinese rule of their homeland.
 
The Dalai Lama fled Tibet in 1959 after a failed uprising against Chinese rule.  This year for his 76th birthday he is in the United States for an 11-day Buddhist ritual, known as a kalachakra. It is expected that upwards of 10,000 followers a day from America, Asia and Europe will attend the event.