S Africa Peace Summit Postponed
A peace conference of Nobel laureates in South Africa has been indefinitely postponed after the country denied a visa to the Dalai Lama, a Tibetan spiritual leader.
The move by the conference's organisers on Tuesday came after the South African government said that the Dalai Lama's presence could disrupt its hosting of the football World Cup in 2010.
The peace conference scheduled to be held Friday, March 27 has been postponed indefinitely. Controversy arose when the S. African government refused the Dalai Lama a visa. The Dalai Lama is a recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. Several other laureates including S. African Desmond Tutu protested the exclusion of the Tibetan spiritual leader.
It is widely believed that China exerted economic pressure on the S. African government.
The postponement of the conference comes after several laureates, including Desmond Tutu, a South African archbishop, pulled out in protest at the refusal to grant the Dalai Lama entry to South Africa.
The South African newspaper Sunday Independent said the refusal to allow the Dalai Lama into the country was due to pressure from China, a major trading partner for South Africa.