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10th Apr 2023

Dalai Lama issues apology after video shows him kissing boy on lips and asking him to ‘suck my tongue’

Charlie Herbert

A spokesperson said the Dalai Lama ‘regrets the incident’

The Dalai Lama has apologised after footage showed him kissing a young boy on the lips and asking him to ‘suck my tongue’ at a public event in India.

The interaction took place in late February at the Dalai Lama’s temple in Dharamshala, at an event that was attended by 100 young students who had graduated from the Indian M3M Foundation, the Guardian reports.

At one point during the event, a young boy asks if he can come up and hug the Dalai Lama, who is the holiest figure in Tibetan Buddhism.

When he comes up to the front, the Dalai Lama gestures to his cheek and is heard saying “first here,” prompting the child to kiss him on the cheek and give him a hug.

The 87-year-old then says “I think here also” and kisses the boy on the lips while keeping hold of him.

He then says “and suck my tongue” sticking out his tongue. The boy sticks out his own tongue and tries to move away from the religious figure, before the Dalai Lama pulls him in for another hug and laughs along with the audience.

News footage of the interaction has been widely shared on Twitter, with many condemning it as “disgusting,” “abusive,” and “absolutely sick.”

A statement has now been shared from the Dalai Lama’s official Twitter account, apologising for his actions but saying that he was just being “innocent and playful.”

A spokesperson said: “A video clip has been circulating that shows a recent meeting when a young boy asked his Holiness if he could give him a hug.

“His Holiness wishes to apologise to the boy and his family, as well as his many friends across the world, for the hurt his words may have caused.

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

This is not the first time the religious figure has had to issue an apology.

In 2019, he caused controversy after saying that if his future successor is a woman, she should be attractive.

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