United States changed its visa regulations for Chinese journalists last week. The reporters will only have 90 days allowed for visa, which can be extended by the respective journalists.
However, the decision has not gone well with the Chinese government.
Earlier, these visas used to be open-ended that did not need extension, unless the employee moves to a different company or medium.
The new guidelines that have been issued by the USA now limits the accessibility of Chinese reporters in the US now. Now, China has responded by warning the American government that China will have to take countermeasures if the US does not correct its mistake.
Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian called this move an escalation of suppression against Chinese media. China claims that this will directly lead to oppression of Chinese journalists and will limit their ability to report in the US.
Zhao stated the Chinese government feels that the US is using these visas to “take discriminatory limitations”
In a media briefing, Zhao said, “We are resolutely opposed and strongly dissatisfied with this. We require the U.S. to immediately correct its mistake, or China will have no choice but to take countermeasures.”
This is not the first time in this year that US and China have locked horns with respect to journalism. In March, China expelled American journalists from three U.S. newspapers, a month after the United States said it would begin to treat five Chinese state-run media entities with U.S. operations as foreign embassies.
Earlier, China expelled three Wall Street Journal reporters – two Americans and an Australian – after the paper published an opinion column calling China the “real sick man of Asia”.