BEIJING, Sept. 5 (Xinhua) -- China's Foreign Ministry on Friday expressed appreciation toward South Africa after the country refused the Dalai Lama entry into the country.
"Dalai is a political exile who has been engaged, under the cloak of religion, in impairing China's sovereignty and territorial integrity as well as the unity of the Chinese nation," Foreign Ministry Spokesman Qin Gang said at a daily news briefing.
China firmly opposes the Dalai Lama's secessionist activities in any name, Qin said, adding China "highly appreciates" South Africa for its respect and support for China's sovereignty and territorial integrity.
"(We) believe that South Africa will continue to support China on sovereignty and territorial integrity," Qin added.
Media reports said that South Africa has denied the Dalai Lama a visa to the country where he was going to attend a meeting.