CHENGDU, China — China accused the Dalai Lama on Sunday of stoking Tibetan unrest to sabotage the Beijing Olympics and also berated House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, saying she is ignoring the truth about Tibet.
This month's violence in Tibet and neighboring provinces has turned into a public relations disaster for China ahead of the August Olympics, which it had been hoping to use to bolster its international image.
The Chinese government said through official media that formerly restive areas were under control and accused the Dalai Lama, a Nobel Peace Prize winner, of trying to harm China's image.
"The Dalai clique is scheming to take the Beijing Olympics hostage to force the Chinese government to make concessions to Tibet independence," said the People's Daily.
The Tibetan spiritual leader called the accusations against him "baseless," asserting that he supported China's hosting of the Summer Games.
"I always support (that) the Olympics should … take place in Beijing … so that more than 1-billion human beings, that means Chinese, they feel proud of it," he said Sunday in New Delhi.
Pelosi's visit to the Dalai Lama in Dharmsala, India, on Friday was the first by a major foreign official since the protests broke out. The Democratic leader said if people don't speak out against China's oppression in Tibet, "we have lost all moral authority to speak on behalf of human rights anywhere in the world."
China's official Xinhua News Agency published commentary Sunday accusing Pelosi of ignoring the violence caused by the Tibetan rioters.
Pelosi spokesman Drew Hammill said Sunday that Pelosi condemns the Chinese government's crackdown in Tibet and calls on it "to begin a substantive dialogue and to allow journalists and independent monitors into Tibet to find out the truth."