US official to travel to Tibet
( dpa )- A US embassy official in Beijing will travel to Tibet on a Chinese government-led trip, but the access granted by the Chinese to the area still falls short of US requests, the State Department said Thursday.
The US official will go to the Tibetan capital Lhasa on a trip scheduled for Friday and Saturday, spokesman Sean McCormack said.
"We see this as a step in the right direction, but it's not a substitute for the ability of our diplomats, as well as others, to travel not only to Lhasa, but into the surrounding area specifically," McCormack said.
President George W Bush telephoned Chinese President Hu Jintao on Wednesday urging him to refrain from violence in quelling protests that began earlier this month calling for an end to Chinese rule.
Bush also urged Hu to begin holding talks with the Dalai Lama, Tibet's spiritual leader.