Incensed over a US State Department report outlining Beijing’s alleged global disinformation campaign, the Chinese foreign ministry called the United States the true “empire of lies” on Saturday.
The US report — released on Thursday — had disregarded facts, and was itself false information, the Chinese foreign ministry said in a statement.
The report in contention, produced by the US State Department, had accused Beijing of ploughing billions of dollars annually into information manipulation efforts.
Also on AF: China-Western Tensions Reshaping Global Business
The report, produced under a congressional mandate to detail state information manipulation, said China was manipulating global media through censorship, data harvesting and covert purchases of foreign news outlets.
However, despite the unprecedented resources devoted to the campaign, Beijing had hit “major setbacks” when targeting democratic countries, due to local media and civil society push-back, the report added.
China’s foreign ministry said the agencies of the US State Department that produced the report “were the source of false information and the command post of ‘cognitive warfare’.”
“Facts have repeatedly proven that the United States is the true ’empire of lies’,” it added.
The US report comes amid controversy over China’s attempts in recent years to increase the global footprint of its government-controlled media. Beijing is seeking to combat the negative images of China it feels are propagated by global media.
View this post on Instagram
- Reuters, with additional editing by Vishakha Saxena