Q: Last week, after the United States announced the designation of six more Chinese media as "foreign missions", the foreign ministry spokesperson said China would make a legitimate and necessary response. What specific measures will China take?
A: In recent years, the U.S. government has placed unwarranted restrictions on Chinese media agencies and personnel in the United States, purposely made things difficult for their normal reporting assignments, and subjected them to growing discrimination and politically-motivated oppression. With regard to its designation of six more Chinese media outlets as "foreign missions", I already stated China's solemn position last week. We urge the United States to change course, undo the damage and revoke the designation of the six Chinese media outlets. However, the U.S. side, in total disregard of China's legitimate and reasonable demand and solemn warning, insistently ramped up political repression and stigmatization of Chinese media agencies and personnel.
In response, China demands that the China-based branches of the American Broadcasting Corporation, The Los Angeles Times, Minnesota Public Radio, Bureau of National Affairs, Newsweek and Feature Story News declare in written form information about their staff, finance, operation and real estate in China within seven calendar days from today.
I need to stress that the above-mentioned measures are entirely necessary and reciprocal countermeasures that China is compelled to take in response to the unreasonable oppression the Chinese media organizations experience in the United States. They are legitimate and justified self-defense in every sense. What the United States has done is exclusively targeting Chinese media organizations driven by the Cold War mentality and ideological bias. It has seriously tarnished the reputation and image of Chinese media organizations, seriously affected their normal operation in the United States, and seriously disrupted people-to-people and cultural exchanges between the two countries. It has therefore exposed the hypocrisy of the self-styled advocate of press freedom. China urges the United States to immediately change course, undo the damage, and stop its political oppression and arbitrary restrictions on Chinese media organizations. Should it choose to go further down the wrong path, it could expect more countermeasures from China.