The People’s Republic of China has pressured foreign airline companies, including Australia’s Qantas, to remove any public information that suggests Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau are part of different countries to the PRC.
The following are two translated articles from Chinese-language outlets in Australia which offer different opinions on the controversy. The first is an article published by YeeYi.com (澳洲亿忆网), and the second by Vision Times (看中国):
Australia’s civil airlines’ websites, with Hong Kong and Taiwan as separate entities, might face a complete block from China!
You think this is over, but it’s not! Australia has gone further and further out of the way to challenge China. With the Australian Prime Minister’s visa to visit China being rejected, and Australia continuing to do things, China-Australia relations have been very tense recently. But we did not think that at this critical juncture, Australia’s airline companies would suddenly be “doing things”!
In its international interactions, China has always maintained that Taiwan is a component part. Every country considers its territory to be sacred and inviolable. Recently, some Australian airlines have totally ignored China’s attitude and rashly listed Taiwan as an independent country! The separate listing of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, rather than in the category of other cities in China, is going too far! At this point, the editor of this piece was indignant and wanted to pick up a Chinese history book and explain the history of China to these Australian bumpkins!!!
Such an approach is entirely a sort of provocation of China. For this reason, the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) sent letters directly to several Australian airlines demanding in tough language that they remove any public indication that Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau are subordinate to countries other than mainland China.
The letter stressed that if Australian airlines obstinately persists, their official websites and all types of information in China will be completely blocked!
A spokesman for Qantas said that the letter is true and that it will make an adjustment accordingly. The letter was sent in April and is now in May, but this adjustment has not yet been implemented.
CAAC also sent an identical letter to American Airlines and United Airlines at the same time.
The same words firmly warned them that their official websites will be closed in China if they do not delete the information that divides China’s territory.
The shutting down of official websites is not merely idle talk. According to an investigation, the official website of Marriott International was blocked by the Chinese authorities and the server was closed for a week in January 2018.
Because it lists Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau, and Tibet as independent countries in the questionnaire for customers. This is a contempt for the integrity of China’s territorial sovereignty!
Although Qantas continues to avoid responsibility, other Australian airlines have a good attitude. Among them, Virgin Atlantic quickly committed itself. While the company did not receive a warning from CAAC, it still re-checked whether there was still anything incorrect in the official ticket sales information!
That CAAC issued a letter warning to Qantas is only an example. As China has become stronger, any divisive action with regard to its sovereignty and territorial integrity will receive a serious warning. Especially the issue of the separate affiliation of Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau, etc.
After the Global Times article was published, many foreign companies automatically altered the territorial labels of these regions to “Taiwan, China” or “Hong Kong, China”.
The “One China” principle is one that we will always defend and it absolutely cannot be challenged!
Australia bravely says “No” to the Communist Party of China’s threat about changing Taiwan’s name
The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) recently issued a letter to 36 foreign airlines requesting them to change the names of “Taiwan”, “Hong Kong” and “Macau” on their company websites and in advertisements in accordance with PRC standards. The move sparked the resentment of the countries concerned. After the United States denounced Beijing for its “nonsense”, the Australian foreign minister also publicly warned China not to attempt to meddle with Australia’s aviation industry in this coercive manner.
According to an article in the “Sydney Morning Herald”, the Australian aviation industry received a threatening letter from CAAC last week. It said the names of Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau should be changed on their websites and in advertisements because Beijing believes that the names used by some foreign airlines indicate that they view them as independent countries.
In response to this, Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop publicly announced a few days ago to the Chinese side that it should not use coercive methods to force the Australian aviation industry to adopt the “political opinion” of the Communist Party. The Communist Party of China should not think it can meddle in the Australian aviation industry in a coercive manner.
Bishop said that for Australia the name of the destinations listed by the domestic aviation industry should be determined by the airlines themselves. The government certainly cannot exert pressure on the companies or it could affect their normal operations. Moreover, these things belong to Australia’s own domestic affairs and other countries need not intervene.
On April 25, CAAC issued a public letter to 36 foreign airlines requesting that these operators must change their position on Taiwan and Hong Kong in order to meet the political standards of the Chinese Communist Party. At the same time, it also threatened that if these companies do not comply with the above requirements, they will be handed over to the cyber security department to be dealt with. In this regard, the outside world believes that these foreign airlines’ websites will be subject to control in China and may even be blocked.
In fact, the United States has taken the lead in issuing a public statement denouncing the CPC for this demand, referring to it as “Orwellian nonsense,” and emphasising that Americans will resist the “political correctness” that the CPC imposes on U.S. companies and citizens.
Translation by: Chris R. Lanzit, NAATI Certified Professional Translator (Chinese-English), NAATI Practitioner ID: CPN0BC84W
Date of translation: 14 May 2018Read More