US-China in a media imbroglio over virus origin
The blame game over the origin of Covid-19 has led to an ugly media spat between the two global superpowers, US & China, with both the sides blaming each other. US President Donald Trump claims that the virus originated from a lab in the Chinese city of Wuhan and accuses China of withholding important information.
On Friday, the US Homeland Security Department issued new regulations putting curbs on visas for Chinese journalists to a maximum 90-day stay, with the possibility to request an extension. Reacting to Washington’s move, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian spoke about making
“countermeasures” for a new “discriminatory” American rule tightening visa restrictions for Chinese-origin journalists.
This is not the first instance of the media war between the two countries. In February, China expelled three journalists of The Wall Street Journal in response to the newspaper’s article on coronavirus titled “China Is the Real Sick Man of Asia”. The US retaliated weeks later by limiting the number of Chinese nationals from state-run news outlets in the United States. The next episode in this simmering press spat was China expelling more than a dozen American journalists from the New York Times, the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal in retaliation to the US restricting the number of Chinese media personnel.