The Chinese regime’s suppression of freedoms and human rights is getting worse domestically, while its control of data overseas poses a threat to the international community, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said on Sept. 16 during a trip to Britain.
“They’re getting worse in terms of suppression and freedom of speech,” Pelosi said of the Chinese regime, during a moderated discussion at the Cambridge Union.
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is tightening restrictions on the ability of citizens to speak out, she said. “They’re not trying to change the government, they’re just trying to express themselves, and it’s a major problem.”
The speaker, in the UK for a G7 parliamentary leaders’ conference, pointed to the CCP’s genocide against Uyghurs and other Muslim minorities in Xinjiang, suppression in Tibet, and rollback of democracy in Hong Kong.
Pelosi commended a new security alliance between the United States, Britain, and Australia focused on the Ind0-Pacific region announced on Wednesday, calling it “a very important initiative.” Such actions should be conducted sooner rather than later, she said, before the “economic, security and values threat to the rest of the world” posed by the Chinese regime becomes too large to unwind.
She also praised the UK for deciding to exclude Chinese telecom equipment giant Huawei from its 5G network, calling the company “a big threat.”
Over the past year, Huawei and other Chinese telecom firms have been ousted from next-generation wireless networks across Europe and elsewhere amid growing concern that the equipment could be used by the CCP for espionage or to disrupt communication networks. The Trump administration also put Huawei and its affiliates on a trade blacklist citing national security risks.
“We do have to develop our own 5G and be advanced in so much technology so that we’re not saying, ‘Well, they’re the best and the cheapest and so we all have to be enslaved by the Chinese in terms of their control of the data,'” Pelosi said.
The speaker noted, however, that the United States and other countries should still work with China on other issues, including climate change, terrorism, or fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.