Boston: Hundreds of Buddhists to Protest the Dalai Lama During His Visit

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Over 300 protesters converge on Boston during the Dalai Lama’s visit this week. The protests are organized by the International Shugden Community, who claim the Dalai Lama’s is engaged in religious discrimination and human rights abuses.

Buddhists protest the Dalai Lama

The Tibetan government in exile’s highly public release of these protesters’ photographs and personal information shows a blatant and inexcusable disregard for the safety and welfare of these people

Tibetans, Americans, and international protesters will demonstrate outside the Dalai Lama’s events in Boston, holding placards and chanting loudly “Give religious freedom!” and “Stop lying!”.

Protests in Boston:
Thursday Oct 30, 8.30 am - 4.00 pm, Citi Wang Theatre, Boston - 270 Tremont St
Friday Oct 31, 8.30 am - 11.00 am, Marriott Copley, Boston - 110 Huntington Ave
1.00 pm - 4.00 pm, MIT, Cambridge - 77 Massachusetts Ave
Saturday Nov 1, 8.30 am - 12.30pm, TD Garden, Boston - 100 Legends Way,

The protesters claim the Dalai Lama publicly banned a 400-year-old mainstream religious tradition of making prayers to the Buddhist Deity Dorje Shugden. They state he is responsible for an aggressive persecution campaign affecting millions of people worldwide and resulting in suffering and human rights abuses, including segregation practices. For example, signs refusing entry and services to people of Shugden faith have gone up in shop windows, restaurants and medical facilities in Tibetan exile communities (1).

“The Dalai Lama needs to bring an end to the suffering caused by his sectarianism and religious intolerance. We do not ask that he likes or practices our religion but that religious freedom should apply equally to all people.” said Len Foley of the International Shugden Community (ISC), the group organizing the demonstrations.

Earlier this year hundreds of Shugden practitioners staged peaceful and lawful demonstrations in California, Washington, DC, and Europe. Instead of engaging in dialogue, the Dalai Lama’s government (CTA) responded to the protesters by passing a cabinet resolution criminalizing their Shugden faith (2). The CTA then published the names of 34 of the Tibetan protesters, together with their photographs and personal information. Some of these Tibetans are U.S. residents (3).

“The Tibetan government in exile’s highly public release of these protesters’ photographs and personal information shows a blatant and inexcusable disregard for the safety and welfare of these people,” said spokesperson Len Foley.

Foley continued, “Because he is such a powerful political leader and famous speaker, we have no other method to ask him to stop this suffering other than to demonstrate against him – to publicly raise our voices – requesting him to change his ways and stop the discrimination. Please support us in expressing our free speech.”

The ISC state that they will continue to protest the Dalai Lama at all his events in the United States until he publicly agrees to allow equal rights and religious freedom for all Shugden people throughout the world and encourages his followers to do the same.

The ISC is an umbrella organization comprised of Dorje Shugden practitioners from multiple Buddhist traditions. There are over 4 million people within Tibet, Mongolia, India, the United States and across the world who practice Dorje Shugden prayers.

1. Al Jazeera Reports, April 13, 2009,
2. Resolution 3,
3. Central Tibet Administration, “List of Dolgyal [Dorje Shugden] protestors,”

Recent press coverage includes:
Fox News, Oct 25th, Dalai Lama visit sparks protests in Birmingham
ABC News, Oct 25, Hundreds gather to protest the Dalai Lama in Birmingham
World Net Daily Oct 14,

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Rachael Jeffrey

Rachael Jeffrey
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