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Harvard Law Fellow Is Likely Winner of Election to Lead Tibetan Exile Government

Posted Mar 24, 2011 5:30 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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Harvard Law School fellow Lobsang Sangay may soon have a new position—as leader of the Tibetan government in exile.

Sangay is favored to win the election for Tibetan prime minister that was held Sunday, the Boston Globe reports. The results won’t be announced until late April.

Sangay has never been to Tibet. His father, a Tibetan monk, escaped to India after the People's Liberation Army stormed the region, according to a 2003 summary by Harvard Law School. He obtained an LLM from Harvard in 1996 and stayed on as a fellow researching Chinese-Tibetan issues. He also organized two Harvard conferences attended by both Tibetan and midlevel Chinese officials.

Sangay told the Globe that his work at Harvard has nurtured his diplomatic skills and made him a more sophisticated thinker. “Coming to Harvard made me more rational,” he told the newspaper.

If he is elected, he said, he plans to try to restore freedoms in Tibet, help end suffering of the Tibetan people, and “end political repression and economic marginalization, cultural assimilation, and the environmental destruction taking place in Tibet.”

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