US urged to press China over Tibet self-immolation

By the Associated Press | November 2, 2011 | 4:30 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — The head of the Tibetan government-in-exile is urging the U.S. to press China for access to a region where 10 young Tibetans have set themselves on fire to protest Chinese rule.

Lobsang Sangay says the self-immolations that began in March by protesters shouting slogans of support for exiled spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, showed China's "hard-line policies" were not working.

Sangay says his exile administration, based in northern India, has a sacred duty to show solidarity with the protesters, but he is urging them not to resort to "desperate acts."

Sangay was speaking Wednesday at a news conference in Washington, where he has been meeting U.S. lawmakers.

The Dalai Lama fled Tibet in 1959 and this year delegated his political powers to Sangay, who won a March election.