DHARAMSALA, Oct 17: The elected political head of the Tibetan people Sikyong Dr Lobsang Sangay has been awarded the Presidential Medal by Salisbury University in Maryland, US on Oct 13 for his leadership and promotion of peace and non-violence.
The Presidential Medal is the highest honour awarded to an individual by the university. The citation on the medal reads, “In recognition of his esteemed political leadership and his work to seek a peaceful, non-violent resolution for Tibet.”
Accepting the prestigious award, the Harvard graduate Tibetan leader said the university’s gesture sends a powerful message to both the Tibetans inside Tibet as well as the Chinese government.
“By presenting me this medal, it sends a powerful message to Tibetans inside Tibet that there are friends outside Tibet who are with justice, who stands for human rights and the freedom of the Tibetan people. At the same time, it sends a message to the Chinese government that they should embrace the peaceful and reconciliatory spirit of the Tibetan people and solve the issue of Tibet.” Sikyong said and added that it is also a message to a world beset with violent conflicts that peace and harmony can only be brought about through non-violence.
Archbishop Desmond Tutu, a longtime Tibet supporter and a fast friend of the Tibetan spiritual leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama, also congratulated Sikyong Sangay.
“I am delighted to write this short note to congratulate you on receiving the President’s Medal for Promoting Peace and Understanding especially at this time when we see so much turmoil and suffering caused by violence and unrest. The world has been stunned by the number of refugees seeking to flee violence and unrest. Our world needs more champions of peace and goodwill of which you are one,” Tutu wrote.