China bans BBC World News for content violation; UK says, ‘unacceptable’

On Friday, China’s National Radio and Television Administration has banned British television channel BBC World News from airing in China. BBC World News is not included in most TV channel packages in China but is available in some hotels and residences.

In a statement, China’s Film, TV and Radio Administration said that an investigation on BBC World News’ about China is found to be “seriously violate” broadcasting guidelines, including “the requirement that news should be truthful and fair”, not harm “China’s national interests and national unity.”

Therefore, it doesn’t meet requirements for foreign channels broadcasting in China and its application to air for another year will not be accepted, it added.

According to China’s state news agency Xinhua, the regulator quoted a statement, “As the channel fails to meet the requirements to broadcast in China as an overseas channel, BBC World News is not allowed to continue its service within Chinese territory. The NRTA will not accept the channel’s broadcast application for the new year.”

On the other side, U.K. Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab took his Twitter handle to claim this move by China “unacceptable.” He wrote, “China’s decision to ban BBC World News in mainland China is an unacceptable curtailing of media freedom. China has some of the most severe restrictions on media & internet freedoms across the globe, & this latest step will only damage China’s reputation in the eyes of the world.”

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