ON THE WEB, 12 May 2017
A Chinese state-run newspaper today attacked US House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi for meeting the Dalai Lama in India and accused her of “hyping the Tibet question” when China-US relations are getting better under President Donald Trump. “Just as the China-US relationship is getting back on the right track after experiencing some ups and downs, 77-year-old Pelosi, who is seen very much as clinging to power way past her prime, has found a chance to highlight herself by playing the Dalai Lama card,” an op-ed article in the state-run Global Times said.
Pelosi led a US Congressional delegation to Dharamshala and met “exiled and infamous Dalai Lama”, the article said without mentioning that the delegation was a bipartisan with legislators from both Democrat and Republican parties. “The remarks that Pelosi and her confederates made in Dharamshala were nothing but cliches. By wooing Tibetan separatists, they intended to highlight the US’ high moral ground in democracy and human rights,” it said singularly blaming her for the meeting.
“Another motive of Pelosi is to enhance the voices of the Democratic Party by hyping up the Tibet question, which is nothing but an outdated move. US President Donald Trump is propelled to abandon the polices of the Democratic Party of playing the cards of human rights and democracy, as these moves are doomed to fail,” it added. “The Dalai Lama’s influence is waning and the space for Tibet independence is being squeezed. Pelosi wants to make political gains by clinging to the Dalai Lama, but she fails to grasp where the US interests lie over this matter,” it said. “Pelosi and the Dalai Lama are indulging in their own shows before they exit the political stage,” the article said. The Chinese Foreign Ministry has lodged a protest to US over the Congressional delegation meeting with the Dalai Lama.
US Congress delegation visit to Dharamshala and their meeting with Dalai Lama has “sent very wrong signal to the outside world about supporting Tibetan independence and violated the US government’s commitment to not support Tibet’s independence,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman, Geng Shuang had said. In her meeting with the Dalai Lama, Pelosi said, “As we visit His Holiness the Dalai Lama, our bipartisan delegation comes in his spirit of faith and peace. We come on this visit to be inspired by His Holiness and demonstrate our commitment to the Tibetan people, to their faith, their culture and their language,” Pelosi said while meeting. The delegation’s visit took place as the Tibetan spiritual leader is yet to get an invite from President Trump who is trying to closely engage China to curtail North Korea from developing nuclear weapons and missiles.
Dalai Lama was met by Trump’s predecessors, including Barack Obama ignoring China’s objections. The article said Pelosi led a delegation to visit Tibet in 2015 after which she praised Tibetan culture and the Chinese government’s efforts in protecting ecology and religious freedom and preserving traditional culture. “However, she soon changed her tune, accusing the Chinese government of restricting culture and religious freedom. These words are in violation of the US’ official stance of opposing Tibetan independence,” it said. “Now Pelosi has yet again met with the Dalai Lama and poked her nose into the Tibet question. Such contradictory statements have rendered her moves worthless,” it said.