In a Bangladesh meeting, Francis asks for forgiveness from a people being persecuted in Myanmar. In doing so he speaks the group's name, which he had been advised to avoid.
The Chinese government has issued a warning to the White House that there will be consequences of a diplomatic nature if President Barack Obama goes ahead with a rumored plan to meet the Dalai Lama in Washington later this month A representative from the Chinese Communist Party hinted vaguely at undesirable outcomes (continued).
Shortly after Chinese officials admitted that their country's troops had fired on Tibetan protesters, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called for an investigation into China's accusations that the Dalai Lama was somehow behind the recent violence in Tibet, according to the BBC.
Even though certain inherently prohibitive logistics make it impossible for the Dalai Lama to resign from his position as Tibet's spiritual leader, that's what he's threatening to do insofar as he can if the tensions and violence in Tibet continue to escalate.
If the combined power of thousands of Buddhist monks staging a nonviolent protest isn't enough to oust Burma's oppressive junta, one American hero (cue movie trailer voice-over) is coming to fight for democracy in a faraway land -- or at least stick his nose in another nation's business.
Taking a page from Mahatma Gandhi, many Buddhist monks took to the streets in Burma in September in a showing of civil disobedience against the country's ruling regime. Now, their ranks are diminished as a result of the ensuing military crackdown, but, as one monk from Mandalay tells the BBC, their movement isn't over yet.
President Bush's private meeting with the Dalai Lama on Tuesday, the day before the exiled Tibetan Buddhist leader was slated to receive the Congressional Gold Medal, didn't please Chinese officials, to say the least. They're not really thrilled about the U.S. honoring the Dalai Lama for his role in the ongoing struggle to free Tibet from Chinese rule, either.
Burma's military government has intensified its crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrators, abducting people from their homes in the middle of the night. U.S. Embassy personnel have found some Buddhist monasteries completely deserted while others have been closed off by soldiers.