Chinese officials have blasted YouTube for removing the channel of Hong Kong’s next chief executive John Lee. The officials accused YouTube of interfering with the internal affairs of the country.
In compliance with sanctions imposed on Chinese and Hong Kong officials over the enforcement of the national security law on the island, Google removed the channel of Lee, the sole candidate for the Hong Kong chief executive seat.
China has responded by criticizing YouTube, arguing it is being used as a political tool by the US, which has the “malicious” intention to “disrupt” the upcoming election in Hong Kong.
“No ploys of pressure or sabotage can affect the smooth chief executive election or hold back the overwhelming trend of a turnaround from chaos to stability in Hong Kong,” a spokesperson for China’s foreign ministry said.
A spokesperson for the Hong Kong government said the government opposed the removal of Lee’s campaign channel. They added that the government “and all sectors of society strongly opposed and expressed extreme outrage at any form of interference in the internal affairs of Hong Kong by foreign forces.”
In response to the ban on Wednesday, Lee said: “I am disappointed at not being able to use the platform, but this won’t affect my campaign and my outreach efforts.”
Other tech giants have not banned Lee. However, he is not allowed to use the advertising tools on Facebook and Instagram.