News ID: 265878
Published: 0333 GMT February 19, 2020

China expels WSJ journalists for article it deemed racist

China expels WSJ journalists for article it deemed racist
China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang

China has ordered three foreign journalists of the Wall Street Journal to leave the country over an opinion piece it said was "racist."

The article published on February 3 criticized the country's response to the deadly coronavirus outbreak, BBC reported.

The Chinese Foreign Ministry said it had asked the newspaper to apologize several times but it had declined.

The newspaper said the journalists – who had not written the opinion piece – were given five days to leave China.

China's decision came a day after the US State Department tightened rules on Chinese state media organizations operating in the US, classifying them as foreign missions.

It told five outlets including state-run Xinhua and the China Global Television Network that they had to submit lists of all employees, even though there would be no restriction on their reporting.

The WSJ article called the authorities' initial response "secretive and self-serving" and said global confidence in China had been "shaken."

China's Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said the article was "racist" and "denigrated" China's efforts to combat the outbreak that has killed more than 2,000 people in the country.

"The Chinese people do not welcome media that publish racist statements and maliciously attacks China," Geng said, without naming the journalists being expelled.

The Wall Street Journal identified the reporters as two US citizens – Josh Chin, who is the deputy bureau chief, and Chao Deng – as well as Australian citizen Philip Wen.

It is the first time in more than two decades that journalists holding valid credentials have been ordered to leave China, the BBC's John Sudworth in Beijing reported.

The Foreign Correspondents Club of China called the decision "an extreme and obvious attempt by the Chinese authorities to intimidate foreign news organizations."

Last year, the government declined to renew the credentials – necessary for the work of foreign journalists in the country – of another Wall Street Journal reporter.



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