In June 2019, when protests over a draft extradition bill began to engulf Hong Kong, Ms. Pelosi praised demonstrators as “courageous.” She said the bill — which would have allowed extraditions to the Chinese mainland — “chillingly showcases Beijing’s brazen willingness to trample over the law to silence, dissent and stifle” freedom in the former British colony.
That fall, as protests continued to rage in the city, she piled pressure on Beijing by meeting with high-profile Hong Kong activists in Washington. She said people protesting in the Chinese territory had her “full support and admiration,” and she slammed a decision by Hong Kong officials to bar the activist Joshua Wong from running in local elections.
Chinese officials have never welcomed her criticism. In many cases, they have pushed back with stern language of their own.
During Ms. Pelosi’s 2008 visit with the Dalai Lama in India, for example, the Chinese ambassador to India called Tibet an “internal affair” and warned that “any attempt to cause trouble to China is doomed to fail.”
And in 2019, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, Hua Chunying, said Ms. Pelosi was partly to blame for the civil unrest gripping Hong Kong, where some activists had been trying to draw the United States into their movement.
“It is precisely because of the naked cover-up and connivance of external forces such as Pelosi that the violent anti-law forces are even more fearless,” Ms. Hua said.