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His Holiness in Italy

Pier Marco Tacca/Getty Images

His Holiness the Dalai Lama visited Italy in October, and was made an honorary citizen of the country despite protests from Japan.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama, the spiritual leader of Tibetan Buddhism, began his three-day visit of Italy with a meeting with Milan Archbishop Angelo Scola on Oct. 20. The two spoke of promoting “religious harmony” in front of a room full of members of the church and the press.

"Despite differences of philosophical approach, we are all focussed on the same goal—the importance of love and compassion for our fellow human beings."

- His Holiness the Dalai Lama

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Part of a nearly two-week tour of Europe, the Dalai Lama visited with the Archbishop at his home on Oct. 20.

The Ghe Pel Ling Institute for Tibetan Buddhist Studies organized several classes led by the Dalai Lama during his stay, as well as a public talk on the source of happiness. The institute reported 25,000 people came from 46 countries to see the leader.

Pier Marco Tacca/Getty Images

The chairman of the council of Milan, Lamberto Bertole, gave the Dalai Lama a certificate of honorary citizenship in Milan.

The Dalai Lama was also awarded honorary citizenship of Milan during his visit, despite the objections of the Chinese government. The Chinese embassy in Rome protested the move, saying in a statement that the honor had “seriously wounded the feelings of the Chinese people.”

Despite the objections, the Dalai Lama joked throughout a ceremony at the University of Milano-Bicocca. He then spoke to the crowd of more than 2,400 people, many of them students, and calling on them to help “create a better world for the future.”

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