Exiled Tibetans elect US academic as PM
Exiled Tibetans have voted for a generational shift in their leadership, electing Lobsang Sangay, a Harvard University academic and legal expert, as their new prime minister.
流亡藏人投票通過了領導人的代際更替，哈佛大學(Harvard University)學者、法學專家洛桑桑傑(Lobsang Sangay)當選西藏流亡政府首席部長噶倫赤巴(Kalon Tripa)。
Mr Sangay, a resident of the US over the past 15 years, won a 55 per cent majority to beat two rival candidates in an election held last month.
His election marks a professionalisation of Tibetan politics, until now led by the religious establishment surrounding the spiritual leadership of the Dalai Lama.
The legal scholar takes over the post of Kalon Tripa in Tibet's exiled government, based in the Indian hill station of Dharamsala, in August from a septuagenarian Buddhist monk, Samdhong Rinpoche.
In a statement, Mr Sangay said he was “humbled” by the support he had won among 84,000 eligible voters. He said Tibet's democracy had been strengthened by the election.
“I urge every Tibetan and friends of Tibet to join me in our common cause to alleviate the suffering of Tibetans in occupied Tibet and to return His Holiness to his rightful place in the Potala Palace [in Lhasa],” he said.
Mr Sangay's election comes weeks after the 76-year-old Dalai Lama signalled his intention to relinquish his political power, potentially confounding the Chinese government's efforts to control the succession process after his death.
China has ruled Tibet since 1959 and is openly hostile to the Dalai Lama's leadership and international lobbying efforts on behalf of his people.
Mr Sangay, aged 43 and born in India, represents a younger generation of Tibetans and galvanised support from a diaspora spread across 30 countries.
His followers see him as a dynamic leader who supports more robust international engagement with China over annexed Tibet's status.
He is also expected to leverage his global network, nurtured while at Harvard, to raise awareness and support for the Tibetan cause.
T. Keyzom Ngodup, an adviser to the Tibetan government in exile, said the challenge Mr Sangay faced was to advance the Tibetan cause among younger supporters.
西藏流亡政府顧問T. Keyzom Ngodup稱，洛桑桑傑面臨的挑戰是在年輕支持者中推進西藏事業。
“Time will tell whether his campaign promises are limited to playing to the Tibetan public or whether he can push through the next level of evolution and identity of the Tibetan cause,” she said.
“I believe he can create a strong force of change.”
Mr Sangay was born in Darjeeling to parents who fled Tibet in 1959 at the time of Chinese occupation. He attended Delhi University and joined the Tibetan Youth Congress, a group that promotes Tibetan independence.
洛桑桑傑生於大吉嶺(Darjeeling)，父母在1959年中國占領時逃離西藏。洛桑桑傑曾就讀於德里大學(Delhi University)，並加入了推動西藏獨立的西藏青年會(Tibetan Youth Congress)。
Mr Sangay won a Fulbright scholarship and moved to the US to study in 1995.
He is a research fellow at Harvard Law School.