efe-epaNew Delhi

The head of Tibet's government in exile urged the European Union on Thursday to make greater efforts in supporting the of middle-way-approach, a process of dialogue which aims to attain autonomy for Tibet without separation from China.

President of Central Tibetan Administration Lobsang Sangay said that although he recognized that certain EU members have actively supported dialogue between Tibetans and the Chinese government, the EU, as a bloc, should follow the example of the United States and defend the middle-way-approach more firmly.

"Europe has done a lot for Tibet, but we wish it could do more," Sangay told EFE after the presentation of the Thank You India campaign in New Delhi.

In this way, if Europe supports the non-violent approach followed by Tibet, countries involved in other conflicts can note their example and look for solutions in a peaceful manner.

"This is a test for the European Union and for European countries also, are you for non-violence or for violence? If you are for non-violence you should support Tibet," said Sangay.

The campaign, which is slated to begin on Mar. 31, aims to thank the country for the reception that it has given to the Tibetans, a year before the 60th anniversary of the exile of the Dalai Lama, who has been residing in India since then.

China maintains that Tibet has been an inseparable part of its territory for centuries, although the Tibetans in exile argue that the region was independent until Communist China forces occupied it in the early 1950s.

In March 1959, the Dalai Lama fled with 80,000 other Tibetans to India.

Of the 128,000 or so Tibetans in exile, more than 94,000 live in India, while some 13,500 live in Nepal, almost 2,000 in Bhutan and the remaining 19,000 in the rest of the world, according to CTA data.