Is the U.S. personnel cap on Chinese media outlets reciprocal?

CGTN| 2020-03-09 16:04:22|Editor: Wang Xiaoyu
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Recently, the U.S. announced it would slash the number of U.S.-based Chinese journalists working at five major Chinese media outlets, essentially evicting 60 Chinese journalists.

In response, the All-China Journalists Association (ACJA) issued a statement denouncing the personnel cap and urging the U.S. to stop what it said was "interfering in the operations of Chinese media in the U.S. in a rude way."

Wang Cong, a reporter from The Global Times, said expelling 60 Chinese journalists from the United States is an unprecedented move that would have a lot of dangerous consequences. Although many have painted the expulsion as the U.S.' response to China's revocation of three Wall Street Journal reporters' credentials, Wang stressed that the move should not be seen as tit-for-tat.

"The nature of the U.S. move is very different from what China did with the three Wall Street Journal reporters," he said.

Wang said the move is not reciprocity because there are only nine Chinese media outlets in the United States, while 29 U.S. media outlets operate in China.

Einar Tangen, an independent current affairs commentator, said the cap has done real damage to the relationship between China and the U.S.

"The U.S. has, in essence, erected a cold wall that will impact China-U.S. relations for years to come," he said.

The personnel cap was "expected," said Marcus Reubenstein, an editor of APAC News, a news outlet based in Sydney, Australia.

According to him, the United States is now in an election year, and Trump's base is very nationalistic. So, standing up for what's perceived as American rights might play well with domestic audiences.

He added that the cap is a very political move with a Cold War undercurrent. In his view, it's political payback for China expelling three Wall Street Journal correspondents over the article "China Is the Real Sick Man of Asia."

Reubenstein further pointed out in the U.S., language is taken in an enormous sensitivity. He explained that words indicating discrimination against different races, sexualities and religions are definitely forbidden.

"However, the limits of language in the U.S. seem not to be applied to critiques and criticism against China and its people, which is a little bit hypocritical," he said.

He added that Western media, particularly in the U.S., the UK and Australia, have a "combative" relationship with their own governments. He also noted that President Trump had expelled dozens of U.S. journalists from the White House.(Dialogue with Yang Rui)

"Dialogue with Yang Rui" is a prime time English-language daily talk show on CGTN. The 30-minute program covers a wide range of domestic and international topics, providing a balanced and critical perspective on current affairs and analysis within the framework of cross-cultural and multi-disciplinary comparisons.