LHASA, July 9 (Xinhua) -- "It was astonishing to see the modern part of Lhasa, and I am very glad to have seen the development," said Albert Ettinger, a Luxembourger in Tibet for the first time, attending the Forum on the Development of Tibet.
Ettinger is the author of two books on Tibet, "Free Tibet" and "The Fight for Tibet," both about Tibet's traditions and history, published in German and Italian.
Ettinger said one of the reasons he wrote the books was, as a teacher of German language and literature, he found a German textbook about the Dalai Lama and Tibet to be biased. He was upset because the purpose of school is to teach students to think critically and decided to write a book himself.
Having researched Tibet through books, publications and the Internet, Ettinger said he was still amazed by the changes.
"It is developing very fast," he said, "Lhasa is now a fantastic city; for example, the university with all those beautiful new buildings. The city is very clean too."
"The government can be proud of what it has achieved," Ettinger said suggesting inviting more people to see the real Tibet.
"There are some people who want to see the old Tibet, like an old woman with her prayer wheel, but still they can see the development, at least they can see that the Tibetan language is living, Tibetan people are better off than before, and their religion is protected," he said.
Lhasa and Tibet are more open to foreigners than before, and it could be more open, he said, to let people see with their own eyes.
"And let some of the Dalai Lama's friends come. Maybe they can also learn something," Ettinger said.
The two-day Forum on the Development of Tibet closed on Friday in the regional capital Lhasa.
More than 130 guests from over 30 countries and regions participated in field visits and meetings in Lhasa and Shannan.
This was the second Forum on the Development of Tibet, with the first held in 2014.