LONDON / BEIJING (dpa-AFX) – Great Britain reacted with sharp criticism to a ban on the British foreign broadcaster BBC World News in China. “The Chinese decision to ban BBC World News in mainland China means an unacceptable restriction on the freedom of the press,” said Foreign Minister Dominic Raab after a statement on Thursday evening. “China has some of the toughest restrictions on media and internet freedom in the world, and this latest move will only damage China’s reputation in the eyes of the world.” A State Department spokesman also said: “We absolutely condemn the decision to ban BBC World News.”
The BBC was disappointed. “The BBC is the world’s most trusted international news broadcaster and reports fair, impartial and without fear or favor on stories from around the world,” said the broadcaster on Twitter.
The English-language “Global Times” had previously reported that the station had been banned. “Some of the BBC’s reports on China violated the principles of truthfulness and impartiality in journalism,” wrote the paper published by the communist party organ “People’s Daily” on Friday night (local time). The newspaper praised the move as a “clear signal (…) that there is no tolerance for fake news”.
Specifically, the state medium criticized BBC reports on the democracy movement in the former British crown colony of Hong Kong and on the abuse and rape of members of the Uyghur minority in re-education camps in the northwest region of Xinjiang./bvi/DP/he