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China hits back at US criticism over foreign journalists

Published on Jan 31, 2014 4:44 PM

BEIJING (AFP) - China on Friday hit back at Washington's condemnation of its treatment of foreign journalists, as tensions rise over a New York Times reporter who left Beijing after not receiving a visa.

The case of reporter Austin Ramzy, who departed Beijing for Taipei on Thursday, has sparked protests from the White House and elsewhere that China is seeking to retaliate against news organisations such as the Times and financial news agency Bloomberg that have published investigations into the family wealth and connections of its top leaders.

"China does not accept the unjustifiable accusations by the US side, and demands the US side to respect facts and take cautious words and acts," Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei said in a statement reported Friday by the official Xinhua news agency.

Mr Hong added Washington must behave in a way that was more "conducive to media exchanges and mutual trust between the two countries".

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