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China using fake news to undermine Taiwan's democracy: U.S. report

2018/11/15 18:54:21

Image taken from Pixabay

Taipei, Nov. 15 (CNA) China is carrying out extensive "United Front" work to undermine Taiwan's democracy by spreading fake news through social media and other online tools, a United States report said Thursday.

In its annual report to Congress, the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission (USCC) describes United Front work as a strategy designed by Beijing for "controlling, mobilizing and utilizing" non-Chinese Communist Party (CCP) entities to serve its goals.

Beijing is carrying out extensive United Front work and other political warfare activities against Taiwan, including supporting opposition political parties and spreading disinformation, the report said.

According to the USCC, these activities are intended to build alliances between individuals and groups within Taiwan and the CCP, and undermine President Tsai Ing-wen's (蔡英文) administration and Taiwan's democracy in general.

Peter Mattis, research fellow at the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, was quoted as saying that "Beijing's effort to shape or even destabilize (Taiwan) society itself through United Front work is intensifying. The aim, according to several (Taiwan) interlocutors, is to create a 'fake civil society' that can be used against Taiwan's democratic system."

"Chinese activities have increased in scope, sophistication, and intensity. For the first time in many years, Taiwan's national security officials see change rather than continuity as a hallmark of Beijing's intelligence and subversive operations," Mattis said.

As part of its report on Taiwan, the USCC also commended the country for its robust democracy and free-market economy, and said Taiwan is a model for other countries and a natural partner for the U.S. with its free and open Indo-Pacific strategy.

A vibrant Taiwan and a strong, multi-dimensional U.S.-Taiwan partnership are of intrinsic value to the United States, it concluded.

(By Liao Han-yuan and Ko Lin)