Dalai Lama Drops Tibetan Political Role

The Dalai Lama has given up his political and administrative powers, but will still remain the spiritual leader of the global Tibetan community, a spokesman has told CNN.com.

Lobsang Sangay, who was elected head of Tibet’s government-in-exile last month, will take the place of the Dalai Lama as “head of state,” said Lobsang Choedak.

The changes went through during a three-day session of the exiled Tibetan government’s parliament in Dharamsala, India. The Dalai Lama, who left China 52 years ago after a failed uprising, approved amendments to the exiled constitution that allow him to transfer his political responsibilities.

“The essence of a democratic system is, in short, the assumption of political responsibility by elected leaders for popular good,” he said in March. “In order for our process of democratization to be complete, the time has come for me to devolve my formal authority to such an elected leadership.”