NUJ condemns China's ban of BBC World News

  • 12 Feb 2021

NUJ calls for international community to condemn the move and support the BBC.

Following the decision by the Chinese authorities to ban BBC World News from broadcasting in China, the NUJ has condemned the move as a serious infringement of global media freedom. It follows on from Ofcom's decision to revoke the UK broadcast licence of the China Global Television Network (CGTN) earlier this month and is clearly designed by the Chinese government as an act of retaliation.

The media regulator, China's State Film, TV and Radio Administration, said BBC World News reports did not meet broadcasting standards including "the requirement that news should be truthful and fair" and not "harm China's national interests".

Michelle Stanistreet, NUJ general secretary, said:

"We denounce the decision by the Chinese authorities to revoke the BBC World News licence in China, it is a serious infringement of global media freedom. The NUJ is calling for the international community to join with us in condemning this move and offering support to the BBC.
"The move is clearly intended as retaliation and its impact is to further restrict access to accurate and reliable information. More and more countries are reverting to tactics that censor the media at a time when independent, quality journalism is more important than ever."

The BBC said in a statement:

"We are disappointed that the Chinese authorities have decided to take this course of action. The BBC is the world's most trusted international news broadcaster and reports on stories from around the world fairly, impartially and without fear or favour."

The commercially funded BBC World News TV channel broadcasts globally in English. In China, it is largely restricted and appears only in international hotels and some diplomatic compounds, meaning most Chinese people cannot view it.

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