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Disdain for foreign press undercuts China's global ambition

UPDATE from CPJ: In China, foreign correspondents see worsening conditions (11 July 2013)

(CPJ/IFEX) - China's new leaders have an opportunity to transform international media relations as they assume power in 2013. But their predecessors spent the previous year ensuring that reforms would take years to manifest--even if the new generation shows the political will to implement them.

In 2012, Chinese leaders appeared less concerned than they had in some time with how their treatment of the foreign press corps was perceived internationally. The government forced a foreign correspondent out of the country for the first time since 1998 and allowed anti-foreign popular sentiment to flourish, to the detriment of international correspondents. Obstruction of reporting seemed particularly stark when looking back to the 2008 Beijing Olympics, when leaders tried to appease international media companies concerned about lack of access. The restrictive measures on the mainland came even as the Chinese Communist Party pushed an unprecedented expansion of its own news media into global markets.

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