Chinese officials on Wednesday denied a so-called "media war" over the March 14 riot in Lhasa, the capital of the Tibet Autonomous Region, saying that the majority of foreign journalists were covering the issue fairly.
"Some foreign media have limited knowledge of the situation, while some are explaining it in a different way and from their own perspective," said Qiangba Puncog, chairman of the regional government, at a press conference hosted by the State Council's Information Office.
Indeed, there have been reports that are quite difficult for people who were on the spot at the time to understand, said the Tibetan leader.
Guo Weimin, the director of the press department of the Information Office, also denied the existence of a Sino-foreign "media war" on Tibet. However, he pointed out that in reporting on the incident, some foreign journalists were not objective and fair in terms of context, method, fundamental attitude and expression.
Since the March 14 riot, some foreign news organizations have been accused of cropping photos in a biased manner, and some foreign broadcast organizations have shown reports on riots in Nepal that were described as being in Lhasa.
Chinese netizens and media have attacked what they claim are biased and erroneous reports by foreign media organizations, some of which have subsequently apologized for their reports.
Some young Chinese working in the media have realized that some foreign media reports were not fully correct, and they developed a new understanding about the credibility of the media, said Guo. He promised that the Chinese government will organize more press conferences and tours for foreign journalists.
"We will try every means to provide a sound environment for the media, while we also sincerely hope foreign media will be objective and friendly in covering China," said the official.
(Xinhua News Agency April 10, 2008)