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Stellungnahme des Sprechers des chinesischen Außenministeriums zum sogenannten FCCC-Bericht
2021/03/02

China has never recognized the organization FCCC. A self-styled "club of foreign correspondents in China" can by no means speak on behalf of the nearly 500 foreign journalists in China, but only conveys the paranoid ideas of a handful of Western journalists. It is a typical example of unfair, biased reports, a far cry from fairness and objectiveness as required for media report.

The report confuses black and white in an attempt to mislead the public. China pursues a basic state policy of opening-up. China always welcomes media agencies and journalists from other countries to report in China in accordance with laws and regulations, and provides convenience and assistance for them to work and live here. Despite various difficulties during the outbreak of COVID-19, the Chinese side has offered to help more than 100 foreign journalists and their families stranded abroad to return to China, facilitated their access to the site of nucleic test for the Xinfadi market and vaccination sites in Beijing for interviews, coordinated and assisted foreign media's interviews on vaccine R&D and with relevant personnel of the Wuhan Institute of Virology, and arranged for their participation in interviews on the removal of lockdown in Wuhan and WHO mission's visit to Wuhan. During the period when lockdown measures were lifted in Wuhan alone, we've organized more than 20 group interviews for over 300 foreign journalists. Is there a single word in this so-called report about all this concrete, well-documented facilitation and assistance China has provided to foreign media?

Thanks to China's strict epidemic prevention and control measures, foreign correspondents in China can do their work safely. All Chinese and foreigners in China must abide by relevant quarantine regulations. Even the WHO experts on a China visit are subject to a 14-day quarantine. Why would anyone think foreign journalists don't need to abide by such epidemic control regulations? The report denigrated China's anti-epidemic measures as the restrictions on journalists, and made malicious speculation about China's good will to help journalists and their families return to China. It is nothing but unscrupulous smears to confuse right with wrong.

To blame China for the expulsion of journalists is a completely false accusation. The ins and outs of what happened in the media sector between China and the United States is crystal clear. It is the U.S. side that has been wantonly suppressing Chinese media first and China has been the party forced to make legitimate responses. Starting from 2018, the U.S. side has been asking relevant Chinese media organizations in the United States to register as "foreign agents" and listing Chinese media as "foreign missions". Over the past year, it delayed without cause or even denied visa to more than 20 Chinese journalists, expelled in all but name more than 60, and dramatically limited visa for Chinese journalists to a maximum 90-day stay. In the face of such unjustifiable suppression, the Chinese side has exercised great restraint. To date we've limited our legitimate countermeasures to taking back the press cards of 14 American journalists working with the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post, which expired by the end of last year, and asking U.S. media to declare information including on finance. We have not yet retaliated against the U.S. move to limit visa for all Chinese journalists to a maximum 90-day stay. These are cast-iron facts. The Chinese side has also released the timeline. Why did the report fail to represent the whole story faithfully and only attack China from a biased position?

In recent years, Xinjiang has received a number of visits from international mainstream media, including Western media agencies. As for certain journalists who repeatedly fabricated fake news related to Xinjiang with preconception and conducted interviews in violation of regulations, they have nobody to blame but themselves for being unpopular with their interviewees and dealt with by relevant departments in accordance with laws and regulations.

This so-called organization has been biased, distorting facts and slandering China's media environment for a long time. We have also heard of its bad behavior elsewhere in the world. What I want to stress is that China is a country under the rule of law, where anyone must abide by Chinese laws. It is entirely China's internal affairs for relevant departments to handle relevant issues in accordance with law. No other country or organization has the right to interfere. China's basic state policy of opening-up has not changed and will not change. We always welcome media and journalists from other countries to do their work in China in accordance with laws and regulations, and will continue to provide convenience and assistance. What we oppose are ideological bias against China, fake news under the cover of freedom of the press, and violation of professional ethics.

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