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Archive for China

Newsline: Chinese embassy in Kenya denies racism in ‘blackface’ skit

The Chinese Embassy in Nairobi on Sunday fought back claims of racism in a skit aired on Thursday by China’s national broadcaster. The embassy said any perception of ill-will was from people who are not happy with Beijing’s cooperation with Africa. Mr Zhang Gang, a spokesman of the embassy, told the Nation that the reports of malice were “ill-intended, totally distorting and smearing”. He said the show was vetted by government officials before airing. The controversial skit was aired by China Central Television (CCTV) during an annual gala to mark the Chinese New Year. The gala is said to be the most watched TV event, with more than 700 million people tuning in. This year’s show was themed around the strengthening relations between China and Africa. However, in a performance that was to depict a scene in Kenya of a Chinese man involved in the construction of the standard gauge railway (SGR), a Chinese actress who played the role of a Kenyan mother raised eyebrows. She painted herself black and stuffed her undergarments to look like she had huge behinds. And she showed up on stage with a monkey walking by her side. Reports say the monkey was an African man in a special costume.



Newsline: China’s ambassador to US says it is ‘dangerous to advocate confrontation’

It would be dangerous to advocate for confrontation against China, Chinese Ambassador to the United States Cui Tiankai said. “It’s certainly paranoid to fear that a China that follows its own path of development would be confrontational to the United States. And it’s dangerous to advocate any strategy for confrontation (against China),” Cui told a spring festival reception at the Chinese embassy. “It would be wishful thinking to believe that some political or cultural genetic engineering could be done to change China’s DNA,” he said. The Sino-U.S. relationship “should be characterized by overall cooperation. Friendly competition, if competition is necessary, and no confrontation,” Cui said. “We will continue to have differences between us, but our growing common interests are far more important. We may continue to have disagreements between us, but the need for cooperation will far outweigh any differences between us. We’ll continue to have problems, but dialogues will lead us to solutions,” Cui said.


Newsline: US Embassy Gets Caught Up in Chinese Investors’ Market Rage

Frustrated investors in China are howling about recent stock market losses on the social-media accounts of foreign embassies, in one case turning a greeting by U.S. Ambassador Terry Branstad for the coming Year of the Dog into a platform to protest. Messages posted by the U.S. Embassy to its official account on the Chinese social-media service Weibo have attracted thousands of stock-related comments in recent days. Posts included items about the Winter Olympics and a video Lunar New Year greeting from Mr. Branstad and his wife, in which he speaks Chinese and pets a basset hound. The embassy said in a statement Monday that it registered more than 10,000 comments about stocks pinned to its messages on Weibo, none of which had to do with the market. It said it deleted some of the nastiest ones, which violated the embassy’s terms of use.


Newsline: China embassy to probe claims of Chinese tour guides operating in Malaysia

The Chinese embassy in Malaysia will investigate allegations of Chinese national tour guides operating in the country, especially in Langkawi and Penang, Chinese Ambassador to Malaysia Bai Tian said, Bernama reported. Commenting on media reports quoting local tour guides that more and more Chinese tour guides were operating in Langkawi and Penang, thus affecting their income, Mr Bai said: “I just learned of this. I will direct the Chinese Consulate in Penang to investigate the allegation.” “In principle, we reject actions that affect the local tourism industry,” he told reporters after paying a courtesy call on Plantation and Commodity Industries Minister Datuk Seri Mah Siew Keong.


Newsline: Malaysians in China urged to register with embassy

Malaysians here have been urged to register with the embassy so they can be updated on developments back home and be reachable in case of emergencies. “Whether you are studying or working here, you should register so we can keep you informed of news from back home, such as the recent registration of postal voters,” Malaysian Ambassador to China Datuk Zhainuddin Yahya said at the inaugural Gong Xi Raya celebration. Some 250 Malaysians attended the event, organised by the Malay­sian Chamber of Commerce and Industry in China (Maycham), the only official business chamber re­­presenting corporations and businesses in the country.


Newsline: Chinese diplomats denied spying on international students at embassy dinner in Australia

Chinese diplomats reportedly denied the Communist Party was trying to control international students studying in Australia at a dinner held in Canberra. About a dozen first-term Labor MPs and senators attended a dinner function at the Chinese Embassy in Canberra last October, according to the ABC. The Chinese diplomats present at the meeting – deputy ambassador Cai Wei and first secretary Liu Wei – reportedly tried to convince the Labor cohort China was not spying on or interfering with students studying abroad in Australia. Mr Wei apparently asked how the embassy could possibly keep an eye on “tens of thousands” of students when there were only “three education officers attached to the embassy”.


Newsline: China lashes out at German ambassador over cyber security

China’s foreign ministry lashed out at the German ambassador after he said Beijing failed to respond to requests to discuss Chinese internet controls foreign companies worry will disrupt business. Ambassador Michael Clauss told the South China Morning Post newspaper of Hong Kong the two governments agreed in 2016 to set up a group to discuss cyber issues but it “has yet to see the light of day.” He said requests for a “meaningful dialogue” about Chinese curbs on virtual private networks, which are used for encrypted communication and can evade Beijing’s web filters, have “regrettably not yet received a positive response.” “The remarks by the relevant ambassador are not constructive, and some of them are even wrong,” said a foreign ministry spokeswoman, Hua Chunying, at a regular briefing. Hua said Germany had been invited to send delegations for consultation but was reluctant to do so. “Instead, they accuse China of lacking sincerity for dialogue. It does not make sense,” said Hua. “I hope the German Embassy and the people involved can refrain from unprofessional and irresponsible remarks and do something conducive to development of bilateral relationship and mutually beneficial cooperation.” It is almost unheard of for the Chinese foreign ministry to criticize a foreign diplomat, but Clauss is unusually forthright in talking publicly about import curbs, internet controls and other sensitive issues. Chinese authorities have banned use of unlicensed VPNs as part of a sweeping crackdown on technology to evade controls aimed at preventing the public from seeing material deemed subversive or obscene.