As the supporters of Kuomintang and One China policy criticizes the outrage of a media personality at Ma-Xi meeting on November 7, the society of Taiwan digs deeper into the incident. Media personality Clara Chou, challenged the Minister of the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council Zhang Zhijun when he held the press conference on behalf of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) after Ma-Xi meeting.
On November 7, Chou tried to ask questions at the Ma-Xi meeting press conference when Zhang only allowed China leaning news agencies such as China Times, PRC official press agency Xinhua News and Chinese think tank China Review to pose questions. None of the international and Taiwanese media could speak during the 30 minutes questions. At President Ma Ying-jeou’s international press conference, the media who could pose questions were also staged. Chou tried to protest at the scene because she believes “ it is the duty of journalist to challenge the ruling powers instead of blindly reflecting the status quo.” Journalists should act as a watchdog of the society and speak up when the freedom of press is hindered.
Chou told Liberty Times that the Taiwan Affairs Office of the States Council was in total control of the press conference. Taiwanese media were limited by the Chinese authorities. They placed the Chinese media in position first while Taiwanese media came in second. The Council threatened journalists before the press conference, saying “do not pose questions and cause any tumult or the Singaporean police will take you away.” According to Chou, the government officials of the Mainland Affairs Council of the Republic of China Taiwan did not assist Taiwanese journalists nor protect the reporters’ right to interview.
Chou’s outcry might appear unreasonable to some but necessary to others. Freedom of press is one of the core values in Taiwan’s society but disregarded and frowned upon by China and its ally, Singapore.