The United States State Department has designated five Chinese media companies as state-sponsored propaganda of the Communist Party of China, according to a new report published Tuesday, Feb. 18.
According to documents obtained by Fox News, the designation has been under consideration since December, goes into effect immediately, and includes the following five companies: Xinhua News Agency, China Global Television Network, China Radio International, China Daily Distribution Corporation, and Hai Tian Development USA.
“These five newly designated entities are not independent news organizations—they are effectively controlled by the [People’s Republic of China],” read one of the documents.
“These five entities all meet the definition of a foreign mission under the Foreign Missions Act, which is to say that they are ‘substantially owned or effectively controlled’ by a foreign government,” in this case the Chinese communist regime, according to the State Department document.
With the designations, the media companies must “adhere to certain administrative requirements that also apply to foreign embassies and consulates in the United States,” including providing personnel rosters and information about their real estate holdings in the United States to the State Department’s Office of Foreign Missions.
“This action is long overdue. For years, these so-called media outlets have been mouthpieces of the Chinese Communist Party and these Chinese outlets are becoming more aggressive,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Axios.
Just last week, four members of the Chinese military were charged by the Justice Department for stealing the personal information of over 147 million Americans by a massive cyberattack on credit reporting agency Equifax.
“Chinese spying has reached unprecedented levels in the United States. The FBI is now overseeing around 1,000 cases of espionage, with Chinese spies infiltrating the State Department, the CIA, and Defense Intelligence Agency,” former U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley to the UN wrote in a tweet.
Pompeo, who cast the Chinese Communist Party as “the central threat of our times,” has repeatedly warned of Chinese infiltration into the United States at various levels.
“We can’t ignore China’s actions and strategic intentions,” he said while addressing the National Governors Association winter meeting on Feb. 9. “The Chinese government has been methodical in the way it’s analyzed our system … it’s assessed our vulnerabilities and it’s decided to exploit our freedoms, to gain an advantage over us at the federal level, the state level, and the local level.”