Wednesday, March 10, 1999 Published at 00:15 GMT
Dalai Lama committed to change
China marks the anniversary with an exhibition hailing Tibetan reforms
Wednesday marks the 40th anniversary of the Tibetan uprising against Chinese rule, during which thousands of Tibetans were killed and the country's spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, fled to India.
Chinese troops were quick to crush the rebellion but thousands of Tibetans were killed in the fighting.
During the confusion, the Dalai Lama and most of his ministers fled to India where they set up their government in exile.
China has repeatedly questioned the Dalai Lama's claims that he is not seeking independence for Tibet.
The spiritual leader also says he regrets that informal contact with the Chinese Government is not working properly.
However, the Chinese Government has intensified its campaign against the Dalai Lama in the run-up to the anniversary..
At a news conference, Tibet's governor Raidi criticised the Dalai Lama saying he had not done a single good thing for the Tibetan people.
China, by contrast, says they have improved the living standards for Tibetans over the past 40 years.
Frustration and optimism
The Dalai Lama says there are reasons to be optimistic about the future although the situation looks unpromising from within Tibet.
He sees a significant change in the world attitude towards the Tibetan cause.
"I think in recent years there has been a lot more support - genuine, spontaneous support for the just cause. "
"And then most importantly among the Chinese, not only outside but also inside China, there is more and more genuine support and concern. That is very encouraging."
Tibet according to China
The exhibition highlights official statistics, stating that since 1959, life expectancy has nearly doubled, grain output has increased, and now over 80% of school-aged children attend classes.
The governor of Tibet told a news conference that he believes the Dalai Lama is both unwilling and afraid to negotiate.
A BBC correspondent in Beijing says in recent years, both sides have said that they want a resolution to the problem but this seems as far away as ever.
He thinks he made a "100-per-cent" right decision 40 years ago to leave Tibet.
"I think that life of a stateless refugee has provided me a good opportunity to meet with people from different backgrounds and different religious traditions. As an individual, I think I have had very useful experiences."