It’s on! China kicks out American journos, after Trump admin limits Chinese media employees

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Screengrab CNA

British Broadcasting Corporation’s China correspondent, Stephen McDonnell, said in a tweet on Tuesday afternoon that China will be expelling American journalists from the country.

“Wow! All #US journalists working for New York Times, Wall St Journal and the Washington Post (who’s credentials expire this year) to be expelled from #China,” he tweeted. “They have 10 days to leave. #Beijing has just announced.

In a follow up tweet, McDonell clarified that he doesn’t know if this means a removal of their visas, but stressed that without press credentials, the U.S. journalists cannot work in mainland China, Hong Kong and Macao.

The BBC reporter tweeted: “I’m not sue if the removal of #China press credentials for #US journalists working for NYT, WSJ and WaPo also technically means automatic removal of their visas but no credentials means no work here in mainland China, #HongKong or #Macao.

The New York Times confirmed the story, reporting that China announced Tuesday that it was kicking out U.S. journalists working for The Times, the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal, and ordered those outlets, along with Voice of America and Time magazine, to provide detailed information about their operations.

The move comes after the State Department announced earlier this month a cap of 100 Chinese citizens who could be employed in the U.S. for five state-owned media outlets.

It also comes after a tweet from President Trump on Monday, who called COVID-19, which first broke out in Wuhan, China, the “Chinese virus.”

“The United States will be powerfully supporting those industries, like Airlines and others, that are particularly affected by the Chinese Virus. We will be stronger than ever before!” the president tweeted.

Trump came under immediate fire by Democrats and their liberal media allies, who accused him of injecting race into the pandemic.

New York City’s Democratic Mayor Bill de Blasio was quick to come to the defense of the Chicoms.

Comrade de Blasio accused the president of “fueling more bigotry.”

Beijing objects to any such reference, suggesting that the coranavirus may not have originated in China.

There are more than 170,000 reported coronavirus cases worldwide, with more than 80,000 in China, according to the BBC.

A controversial Chinese diplomat went so far last week as to suggest the U.S. military may have brought the novel coronavirus to China.

The BBC reported that Trump’s tweet angered Beijing, noting that a foreign ministry spokesman warned the US should “take care of its own business” before stigmatizing China.

“We urge the US to correct its mistake and stop its groundless accusations against China,” the spokesman said.

China’s official news agency Xinhua said Trump’s tweet was “racist and xenophobic.”

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Tom Tillison

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