02/04/2009, 00.00
CHINA - TIBET - ITALY

Dalai Lama in good health, preparing for trip to Italy

On February 2, he left the hospital in New Delhi where he had checked in for a pinched nerve. On February 8, he will be in Rome, and in Venice on the 9th, to become an honorary citizen of the two cities.

New Delhi (AsiaNews/Agencies) - The Dalai Lama left Apollo Hospital in New Delhi two days ago, and his followers say he is doing well. The 73-year-old spiritual leader of the Tibetan Buddhists is expected in Italy on February 8.

Tenzin Taklha, his close collaborator, has reiterated that the Dalai Lama was hospitalized only for a pinched nerve in his arm, but that now he is doing well and has returned to his residency in exile, in Dharamsala in northern India.

But others observe that it is the third time he has been hospitalized in five months.

Now the Nobel peace prize laureate is heading to Italy. He will land in Rome on February 8, and will receive an official welcome at the Campidoglio on the 9th. He will leave for Venice on the same day, staying there until February 10, when he leaves again for Germany. Both cities will award him honorary citizenship.

There's curiosity over the reaction from Beijing, which in the past has criticized any meeting of the Tibetan leader with official representatives of foreign governments.

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