İrem UZUN -TDO- British television channel BBC World News has been barred from airing in China, the National Radio and Television Administration said on Friday, a week after the United Kingdom’s media regulator revoked Chinese state-owned broadcaster China Global Television Network’s (CGTN).

In recent weeks the Chinese government has criticized BBC reports on the COVID-19 pandemic in China and allegations of systematic rape, sexual abuse and forced labor in the Xinjiang region, home to Uighurs and other predominantly Muslim ethnic groups. In a statement, the administration said an investigation found BBC World News’ China-related reports had “seriously violated” regulations, including that news should be truthful and fair, had harmed China’s national interests and undermined national unity. The channel therefore does not meet requirements for foreign channels broadcasting in China and its application to air for another year will not be accepted, it added.

The BBC said it was disappointed by China's decision, adding the BBC "is the world's most trusted international news broadcaster and reports on stories from around the world fairly, impartially and without fear or favor".  UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab called the move "unacceptable." "China's decision to ban BBC World News in mainland China is an unacceptable curtailing of media freedom," Raab tweeted.

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