China has announced its decision to sack American journalists from three major US newspapers, in one of the communist government’s biggest crackdowns on the foreign press and escalating a bitter row over media freedoms.
According to AFP, the move against The New York Times, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal came as the superpowers also feuded over the coronavirus pandemic, with US President Donald Trump provocatively branding it the “Chinese virus”.
The expulsions were in retaliation for Washington’s decision to cut the number of Chinese nationals allowed to work for its state-run media on American soil, China said.
The foreign ministry while explaining the explosions said: “They are legitimate and justified self-defense in every sense.”
“The journalists at the three newspapers must hand back their credentials within 10 days, and they would also not be able to work in the semi-autonomous cities of Hong Kong and Macau,” it said.