The director of the press part of the Info Division, Mr Ma Yu-chen, stated: “At the moment we can not sit down with Australian journalists.”
The dinner was organized for final night time and was to have been attended by Overseas Ministry officers and three Australian correspondents resident in Peking.
Two excessive officers refused to attend. They’re Mr Peng Hua, director of the Info Division, and Mr Wu Fan-wu, deputy director of the Americas and Oceania Division.
Three different officers, together with Mr Ma, have been anticipated to attend however didn’t seem on the restaurant at which the Ambassador and Mrs Fitzgerald have been ready.
The Ambassador and his spouse waited for greater than an hour earlier than with the ability to contact Mr Ma who stated he and the opposite two males had not come due to the presence of the Australian correspondents.
It’s understood an apology has been remodeled the incident.
Officers have assured the Ambassador that the Chinese language feeling was not directed towards the Australian Embassy or the Australian Authorities however towards the Australian correspondents due to the angle of the Australian press in the direction of China.
The fast reason for criticism was the exhibiting of the Antonioni movie in Australia.
The Chinese language Ambassador to Australia, Mr Wang Kuo-chuan, had already protested in regards to the exhibiting of the movie on the Sydney Movie Competition. A Melbourne screening was cancelled. The ABC plans to indicate the movie on July 1, reversing its earlier stand.
The ABC was reluctant to indicate the movie at first as a result of it feared it will put its Peking correspondent, Mr Paul Raffaele, at some threat.
The refusal of the Chinese language officers to dine with the correspondents is the second incident involving the Australians since we arrived late final 12 months.
In February there have been protests in Peking and Canberra in regards to the “hostile” angle of the Australian press.
The newest incident is unlikely to enhance working situations for the correspondents, already working underneath very inflexible management.
Since January all requests by correspondents to journey have been refused and repeated requests that the correspondent be allowed to go to establishments to see points of Chinese language life have additionally been turned down.
The Chinese language feeling in regards to the Antonioni movie appears to have outraged nationwide sensibilities to an unprecedented extent.
Because it has already been proven in different nations, the sensation aroused by the Australian screening appears uncommon.
CANBERRA, Wednesday.—The Prime Minister, Mr Whitlam, took a agency line on the screening of the movie when questioned at his press convention at present.
Mr Whitlam stated he was stunned that there must be any try to stop the screening of the movie.
“I have never seen the movie, however in all occasions it’s being screened, I’m informed. The one factor that comes inside Australian Authorities jurisdiction by any stretch of the creativeness is the ABC,” he stated.
“Properly, the ABC underneath this Authorities is free to do what it likes.”