China expels U.S. journalists as spat with U.S. escalates

Beijing announced early on Wednesday (March 18) that it is withdrawing the press credentials of American journalists at three U.S. newspapers: the New York Times, News Corp's Wall Street Journal, and the Washington Post.

The move is likely to intensify the already frosty relationship between the world's top two economies.

According to the Foreign Correspondents Club of China, which said it "deplores" China's decision, the expulsion is expected to affect at least 13 journalists.

China has defended its decision, which will even bar reporters from working in Hong Kong, and says it was a retaliation against U.S. restrictions on Chinese journalists.


"The steps China has taken are countermeasures to U.S.'s unreasonable oppression on Chinese media. China is compelled to take them. China shouldn't be responsible for the cause and the result on the current situation. If any American media has any issue, please raise it to the U.S. government."

Washington forced Chinese state media firms to register at foreign embassies in February.

Beijing then expelled three Wall Street Journal correspondents - two Americans and an Australian - following an opinion column by the newspaper that called China the quote, "real sick man of Asia."