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Home > Press and Media Service > Spokeperson's Remarks
Chinese Embassy Refutes Accusations Against China of the Lack of Press and Artistic Freedom
2013/05/21

The following is a letter from Mr. He Rulong, Spokesman of the Chinese Embassy in London to Guardian’s Letters’ Editor, which was carried in its print and online editions on 20th of May.

Sir,

The accusation that China "restricts" press and artistic freedom (Letters, 3 May) is untrue and unacceptable. The constitution of the People's Republic of China explicitly enshrines Chinese citizens' right to freedom of expression and press in its article 35. The Chinese government attaches great importance to and protects such rights in accordance with law. China now publishes 1,937 newspapers, 9,851 journals, 302,000 kinds of books, and owns over 500 radio and TV broadcasters. China also boasts the world's biggest and most dynamic online community. Sina Weibo alone has more than 500 million registered users, posting 100m comments every day that cover wide-ranging topics and opinions.

Moreover, cultural undertakings in China are experiencing rapid development and great prosperity. Across the country there are over 200,000 performers and nearly 7,000 troupes. China overtook Japan as the second largest film market after the US last year. Only with a free and unbridled environment can China maintain such development in its media and publishing industry. Only against a diverse and flourishing cultural backdrop can outstanding artists such as Nobel laureate Mo Yan come to prominence.

But while China firmly upholds the rule of law, all must abide by the constitution and law. I believe this is also true in the countries where the petitioning artists come from. We hope that those artists respect the legal system of China as well as that of their own countries. They should understand China's press and cultural development in an objective and all-around way and change their untrue and biased views.

He Rulong

Spokesman of the Chinese Embassy

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