BEIJING: China’s leader Xi Jinping has attempted to explain and justify his government’s decision to ban BBC World News.
This week China announced that the BBC World News service would be banned, just days after the UK government withdrew the British broadcasting licence held by China’s state broadcaster CGTN.
Speaking to reporters in Beijing, Xi Jinping (main picture), said the BBC had been banned because it was “fake news”.
“It’s fake news. So very, very fake, oh yeah. Totally fake,” he said. “I’m trying to make China great again but the BBC and other fake news outlets constantly denigrate China and the actions of the Chinese government.
“It just shows you just can’t trust the lamestream media, especially fake news outlets like the BBC. That’s why we’ve banned it.”
Xi went on to justify the ban, saying a precedent had been established decades ago.
“Way back in 1994 the US media mogul Rupert Murdoch dropped BBC News from his Star TV service which then operated in China,” he said.
“Mr Murdoch knew the BBC was regularly criticising China so he stopped airing its news service through his satellite TV service.
“So there’s a clear precedent set by Mr Murdoch who obviously only had China’s best interest at heart,” he said.