The Dalai Lama, who is revered as a spiritual leader by millions of people and viewed as one of the most compassionate of men, had some surprising advice for Europe as they face an immigration crisis: send the immigrants back where they came from because for Europe to become Muslim or African is “impossible.”
Interviewed by the BBC, the Dalai Lama, 84, said bluntly of the refugees from Arab nations and Africa who have migrated to Europe, "A limited number is OK, but the whole of Europe [will] eventually become Muslim country, African country – impossible.”
Despite the fact that he is hard-line on immigration to Europe, saying, "European countries should take these refugees and give them education and training, and the aim is return to their own land with certain skills," the Dalai Lama said of the problems facing the United States on its border with Mexico, “"When I saw pictures of some of those young children, I was sad. America ... should take a global responsibility."
Although the Dalai Lama would prefer to have Europe evince a parochial attitude, he said of President Trump that his tenure was marked by a "lack of moral principle,” adding, "When he became president he expressed America first. That is wrong.” Yet he is appreciative of Vice President Pence for supporting the rights of the Tibetan people.
The Dalai Lama was forced to flee his native Tibet 60 years ago at the age of 24 when China invaded the country. He has made his home in India ever since.
He recalled, "One Chinese official once called me a demon. When I first heard that, my response was — yes, I'm a demon with horns. I pity their ignorance, their political thinking is very narrow-minded.”
In September 2018, the Dalai Lama came under fire after he stated at a conference in Malmo, Sweden, "Receive them, help them, educate them ... but ultimately they should develop their own country. I think Europe belongs to the Europeans," adding that "they ultimately should rebuild their own country,” as Business Times reported.
He later issued a statement clarifying his view in which he asserted:
When refugees from other countries have come to Europe, it’s wonderful that Germany and other European countries have given them help. However, I think that most of those refugees think of their own lands as home, but just now there is lots of killing, bullying and suffering there. That’s why they escaped. So, in the short term, European countries should provide them with shelter, and should particularly provide children with facilities for education and training, including mechanical training, for the young people.
The aim is that they should eventually be able to return to rebuild their own countries. That has been my view right from the beginning. For example, we Tibetans took shelter in India, but most Tibetans want to return to Tibet when the situation there has changed. Each country has its own culture, language, way of life, and it is better for people to live in their own country. That is my view.