China bans more American journalists in response to limitation of state-run media in the U.S.

( – The back and forth between China and the United States in regard to the press continued Tuesday, with China banning reporters from three prominent publications.

Following President Donald Trump’s decision to limit the number of reporters who work for state-controlled publications in China from being credentialed in the United States, China fired back. They revoked the press credentials that reporters had from the Washington Post, Wall Street Journal and New York Times.

In an announcement Tuesday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in China said:

“China demands that journalists of U.S. citizenship working with the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post whose press credentials are due to expire before the end of 2020 notify the Department of Information of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs within four calendar days starting from today and hand back their press cards within 10 calendar days.

“They will not be allowed to continue working as journalists in the People’s Republic of China, including its Hong Kong and Macao Special Administrative Regions.”

The Tuesday bans of American journalists from three of the most prominent publications in the country follows China’s decision to remove three Wall Street Journal reporters from their country after the newspaper published an op-ed that China thought was overly critical of them. In general, China has not been happy with the American media’s criticism of their country’s response, or lack thereof, to the coronavirus, including failure to report on the spread of the virus and containment efforts.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced further restrictions on American media outlets operating in China:

“China-based branches of Voice of America, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post and Time [must] declare in written form information about their staff, finance, operation and real estate in China.”

China said they were putting these restrictions in place in response to what it called unfair treatment of their own reporters in the United States from the Trump administration. As such, they called these measures:

“Entirely necessary and reciprocal countermeasures that China is compelled to take in response to the unreasonable oppression the Chinese media organizations experience in the U.S. They are legitimate and justified self-defense in every sense.

“What the U.S. has done is exclusively targeting Chinese media organizations, and hence driven by a 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 U.S., and seriously disrupted people-to-people and cultural exchanges between the two countries. China will take reciprocal measures against American journalists.”

Ben Sasse, a Senator from Nebraska and a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence said China made this move because it is “terrified of a free and independent press.” He continued:

“Chairman Xi is terrified of a free and independent press because he doesn’t want to be challenged when his government regularly spews insane propadanda — like the recent conspiracy theory that the United States created the coronavirus. These thin-skinned communist hacks hate the truth and are committed to covering-up their failures.”