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Deutsche Welle corrects misrepresentation of President Ma's comment

2014/09/26 10:33:30

Berlin, Sept. 25 (CNA) German public broadcaster Deutsche Welle (DW) on Thursday admitted to a mistake in one of its Chinese-language reports that was based on an interview with President Ma Ying-jeou and said that the article has been replaced with a corrected version.

In addition to publishing an updated, corrected version, DW added a note at the end of the article, offering a clarification of Ma's remarks, said Philipp Bilsky, head of Deutsche Welle's Chinese-language service.

The note said the original version mistakenly quoted Ma as saying that he is willing to learn from the experience of the two former Germanys in their handling of bilateral relations while moving toward eventual unification in 1990.

What Ma said in the interview was merely that he is willing to learn from the experience of East Germany and West Germany in the handling of their relations, the note said.

The Presidential Office also issued a statement on the matter late Thursday.

Presidential Office spokesperson Ma Wei-kuo (unrelated to the president) said the article, which quoted a Deutsche Presse-Agentur report, was inaccurate and she explained that no DW personnel were present when the president made his comments Monday to European correspondents based in Asia.

The spokeswoman said that contrary to the DW article, the president made it clear during the interview that the Taiwan-China relationship is different from the Cold War relationship between East and West Germany, meaning Taiwan cannot emulate the German model in its cross-strait relations.

(By Lillian Lin, Kelven Huang and Jay Chen)