The Chinese government has banned all access to the ABC News webpage, citing the broadcaster’s violation of China’s laws and regulations.
The move, enacted by China’s Office of the Central Cyberspace Affairs Commission, follows a decision by the Australian Government to block two Chinese telcos from being involved in a 5G infrastructure roll-out in Aus.
The decision was mainly directed at Chinese company Huawei, with the tech giant’s Australian chairman John Lord slamming Australia for its xenophobic policies.
The Chinese government also stepped in, and encouraged Australia to “abandon ideological prejudice”.
Australia’s telco blocking resulted in an inability to access to ABC in China, though no official statement had been released.
Now, a spokesperson from the Office of the Central Cyberspace Affairs Commission sent a statement to the ABC addressing the blocking, confirming the news site had officially been banned in China.
It read: “China’s internet is fully open. We welcome internet enterprises from all over the world to provide good information to the netizens of China.”
“However, state cyber sovereignty rights shall be maintained towards some overseas websites violating China’s laws and regulations, spreading rumours, pornographic information, gambling, violent terrorism and some other illegal harmful information which will endanger state security and damage national pride.”
The spokesperson added Chinese government agencies “have the right to take technical measures to block dissemination”.
Despite the ABC ban, Chinese users are still able to access Fairfax, News Limited and The SBS.
B&T has approached the ABC for comment.