The United States administration on Monday designated four more Chinese propaganda outlets as ‘foreign missions’, announcing that they are the mouthpieces for the Communist Party of China.
In a move that is likely to increase tensions between the two countries, the Donald Trump administration designated four media outlets – state broadcaster China Central Television, the ruling Communist Party’s mouthpiece newspaper People’s Daily, its tabloid subsidiary the Global Times, and the semiofficial state-run China News Service and reflected their real status as “propaganda outlets” under the control of the Chinese Communist Party.
“The Communist Party does not just exercise operational control over these propaganda entities, but it has full editorial control over their content,” said David Stilwell, the senior US diplomat for East Asia.
In a statement, US State Department spokesperson Morgan Ortagus said, “Over the past decade and particularly under General Secretary Xi Jinping’s tenure, the CCP has reorganized China’s state propaganda outlets disguised as news agencies and asserted even more direct control over them.”
“Pursuant to authorities under the Foreign Missions Act, the State Department is issuing today a new determination that designates the U.S. operations of China Central Television, China News Service, the People’s Daily, and the Global Times as foreign missions,” the statement said.
These four media outlets join five other Chinese news organizations that have been declared as foreign missions by the US authorities in February.
Earlier in February, the Xinhua News Agency, the China Global Television Network, China Radio International, China Daily Distribution Corporation and Hai Tian Development USA, which is the distributor for the People’s Daily in the United States were designated as the foreign missions.
Chinese media outlets will now face restrictions in US
The outlets are now required to report their personnel rosters and real estate holdings to the US State Department and will also put under limits on the number of personnel they can employ in the United States.
The media wars between the US and China have been going on for months after the US authorities in March had said it was slashing the number of journalists allowed to work at US offices of major Chinese media outlets to 100 from 160 due to Beijing’s “long-standing intimidation and harassment of journalists”.
In response, China had expelled more than American correspondents with the New York Times, News Corp’s Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post.
The relations between US-China relations are on the lowest in years now after President Donald Trump has taken a direct stand against China over a range of issues including the handling of the coronavirus pandemic, trade wars and China’s increasing encroachment into Hong Kong.
US President Donald Trump had earlier threatened to cut ties with China
US President Donald Trump had earlier said that he had lost interest in speaking to President Xi Jinping and went on to suggest that his country could even cut ties with China following the outbreak of deadly pandemic of the Wuhan Coronavirus.
Donald Trump, speaking to Fox News in May, had said he was very disappointed with China’s failure to contain the disease and that the pandemic had cast a shadow over the US-China trade deal.
Recently, the Trump administration had repeated similar claims.
US administration to withdraw billions of dollars worth American pension fund investments from China
Earlier in May, the Donald Trump administration had decided to pull out billion dollars worth of American pension fund investments in China. The US administration had asked for the withdrawal of billions of dollars of pension fund investments in China as a response to China’s failure to notify the world regarding the Chinese coronavirus.
Prior to that, the United States Senate had initiated legislation to block Chinese firms from getting listed on the American stock exchanges. There has been some controversy in the US regarding Chinese companies like Alibaba being listed at the New York Stock Exchange and the NASDAQ.
Recently, Trump had signed a bill that would enable the USA to sanction Chinese officials involved in human rights violations against Uighur Muslims.