China expels US correspondents from the Times, WSJ and Post

The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs today announced the expulsion of US national correspondents from The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) and The Washington Post, a move that Beijing claims to have carried out "in the spirit of reciprocity".

"China requires journalists of American nationality working for The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post, whose credentials expire before the end of 2020, to ... return their press cards within the next ten days "The Chinese Foreign Ministry said in a statement published on its website.

In addition, Beijing will not allow affected journalists to continue practicing the profession in China, Hong Kong or Macao, a measure adopted "in response to the US reduction of the Chinese media workforce in the US, which is a expulsion in all but name. "

Furthermore, in retaliation for the "designation of five Chinese media outlets as foreign missions, China reciprocally demands that China-based delegations of Voice of America, The News York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post and Times declare information about their personnel, finances, operations and real estate in China in writing. "

In this sense, the Chinese government warned that "it will take reciprocal measures (to those adopted by the United States) regarding visas, administrative reviews and information."

On March 2, Washington announced limits on the number of Chinese national employees that the Xinhua News Agency, CGTN television, China Radio International station and China Daily newspaper can have on US soil.

While all of the aforementioned Chinese media are owned and operated by the state, only Voice of America is dependent on the Washington Government.

The measure of EE. USA It was in turn a response motivated by Beijing's decision, in mid-February, to revoke Chinese press credentials from three WSJ correspondents.

At that time, China alleged that the expulsion was caused by the publication on February 3 of an opinion article, not signed by any of the journalists referred to, perceived as derogatory and entitled "China, the real patient of Asia".

The Foreign Ministry added today that Washington's measures demonstrate "Cold War mentality and ideological bias" while at the same time making clear, according to China, "the hypocrisy of the self-proclaimed defender of press freedom."

After learning the news, the US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, asked China on Tuesday to reconsider its decision to expel the aforementioned journalists.

The background to this expulsion is the trade war that both economic powers have maintained for two years, the technological war, an underlying struggle for hegemony and, more recently, the exchange of blame of Beijing and Washington on who of the two originated the current one. coronavirus pandemic.

The exercise of journalism in China is greatly hampered by the obstacles, the oversight, and the pressures that the Executive submits to foreign journalists, and the limitations and threats to Chinese national employees on the payroll of foreign media.

As a general rule, Beijing views any information that deviates from "official truth" as an "attempt to tarnish China," and keeps most Western media websites operating on Chinese soil censored for its citizens.


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