Dalai Lama apologizes after video asking child to ‘suck’ his tongue sparks outcry

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The Spiritual Leader of the Tibetan Order of Buddhists, Dalai Lama, has apologized after a viral video emerged where he is seen kissing a child on the lips and asking him to “suck my tongue” at an event in northern India.

In the viral video which sparked a worldwide outrage, the unidentified young boy is seen approaching the Nobel Peace Prize winner before asking, “Can I hug you?”

The 87-year-old spiritual leader then invited the boy on stage and points to his cheek and says, “first here,” prompting the boy to give him a hug and a kiss.

The Dalai Lama then points to his lips, and says: “then I think finally here also.” He then pulls the boy’s chin and kisses him on the mouth.

“And suck my tongue,” he says after a few seconds, poking his tongue out.

However, following the outcry, the Dalai Lama tendered an open apology through a statement issued by his office on Monday, and said he regretted the incident and “wishes to apologize to the boy and his family, as well as his many friends across the world, for the hurt his words may have caused.”

Read also:Buddhist monk chops off manhood to avoid temptation

“His Holiness often teases people he meets in an innocent and playful way, even in public and before cameras,” the statement said.

The current Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, is the world’s best-known living Buddhist figure and the principal spiritual leader of the “Yellow Hat” school of Tibetan Buddhism.

The spiritual leader has been based in India since 1959, following an unsuccessful Tibetan uprising against Chinese occupation and later established government-in-exile in the northern Indian city of Dharamshala, leading thousands of Tibetans who followed him there.

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