London Metropolitan University has expressed ‘regret’ at offence caused to China by its recent award of an honorary doctorate to Tibetan religious leader the Dalai Lama in May.
A report on state-run China Daily said that the university’s vice-chancellor, Brian Roper, had sent a letter to China’s embassy in London on 16 June to apologise for any upset felt by the Chinese people over the award.
A spokeswoman for London Metropolitan said the move came after the university’s media monitoring service had noticed negative comment about the decision on Chinese websites.
However, a representative of the Chinese embassy in London confirmed to Index on Censorship that the letter of apology had come after the embassy had demanded it from the university.
Britain’s universities now hosts over 49,000 Chinese students.