US imposes new rules on state-owned Chinese media over propaganda concerns

Two senior state department officials said the decision was made because China has been tightening state control over its media and President Xi Jinping has made more aggressive use of them to spread pro-Beijing propaganda.

“The control over both the content and editorial control have only strengthened over the course of Xi Jinping’s term in power,” said one official. “These guys are in fact arms of the CCP’s (Chinese Community Party’s) propaganda apparatus.”

The State Department informed the five entities of its decision by letter on Tuesday, the official said. The Chinese embassy did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Tuesday’s decision, the officials said, is not linked to any recent developments in Sino-US relations and has been under consideration for some time.

The new determination is being applied to the Xinhua News Agency, China Global Television Network (CGTN), China Radio International, China Daily and Hai Tian Development USA, the officials said.

Beijing’s control of China’s state-owned media has become “more and more draconian,” the second official said.

Both officials spoke to reporters on condition of anonymity.