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Saturday, Oct 24, 2020

China targets US media outlets amid Hong Kong tit-for-tat

China targets US media outlets amid Hong Kong tit-for-tat

Foreign ministry says Associated Press, CBS, NPR and United Press International have been asked for provide information within seven days. Move follows US decision to register Chinese state media as foreign missions and the ongoing row over law deemed to undermine Hong Kong’s autonomy.
China is targeting more US media outlets amid the ongoing tensions between the two countries following the introduction of a Hong Kong national security law.

Last week, Washington said it would start treating another four major Chinese media outlets – state broadcaster China Central Television; China News Service; People’s Daily, the Chinese Communist Party’s official mouthpiece; and Global Times, a tabloid published by People’s Daily – as foreign missions.

China’s foreign ministry said on Wednesday that the government has asked four US media outlets present in the country to submit information about their China operations.

Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian named Associated Press, CBS, National Public Radio and United Press International as the companies asked to submit the information in writing within seven days.

Zhao said Beijing was forced to take reciprocal measures in response to the “unreasonable suppression” against Chinese media in the US and the move was a “completely legitimate defence”.

“What the US has done is based on a cold-war mentality and ideological bias, and has severely harmed the reputation and image of Chinese media,” he said.

“[It] has … exposed the hypocrisy of the self-labelled so-called ‘media freedom’”.

Five other Chinese media outlets, including state news agency Xinhua, were hit by similar measures in February. Registering news outlets as foreign missions means they have to tell the US authorities about their staffing and real estate holdings.
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