June 16, 2010
The Dalai Lama had planned to visit Russia, where three republics—Kalmykia, Buryatia and Tuva—have significant Buddhist populations. According to phayul.com:
Taking a U-turn from his reported affirmation of Dalai Lama’s visit to Russia, Russian ambassador to India, Alexandr Kadakin has assured China that the Tibetan leader will not be granted visa...
In an interesting turn of events that started with Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov offering Russia’s help in assisting towards successful dialogue process between Chinese and the Tibetan sides last month, and then to the alleged acknowledgment of Dalai Lama’s visit to Russia by Kadakin on June 4, the Russian ambassador recently met with this Chinese counterparts in Delhi and described his earlier affirmation of Dalai Lama’s visit to Russia a “mistake” in the transcript of his interview that was sent to an Indian media agency.
In 2006, Kalmyk president inducted the Dalai Lama into the White Lotus Order, Kalmykia's highest civilian honor (he's pictured here with President Kirsan Nikolayevich Ilyumzhinov), akin to his receiving the Congressional Gold Medal in the US.
Although the Dalai Lama does not call for Tibetan independence, China still considers him a separatist.