24 October 2016
The video, which runs three minutes and 12 seconds, plays about 120 times a day. Photos: Xinhua, Wikipedia
The video, which runs three minutes and 12 seconds, plays about 120 times a day. Photos: Xinhua, Wikipedia

Beijing bombards NY Times Square with video on South China Sea

It’s hard for those passing Times Square in New York not to notice it.

Since July 23, one of the giant electronic billboards set up at the so-called Crossroads of the World has been showing a video produced by Beijing to explain to the whole world the history of the South China Sea and its claims of sovereignty over the disputed waters, am730 reports.

It is understood that the 240-square-meter billboard playing the video has been rented by Xinhua Gallery Media (Beijing) Co. Ltd. under a long-term contract, earning for itself the name “China screen”. The video will be played until Aug. 3.

The official Xinhua News Agency reported that the video “clarifies the truth behind the farce of international arbitration on the South China Sea disputes”, without saying which company produced it.

According to the video, which runs three minutes and 12 seconds, it is indisputable that the beautiful islands in the South China Sea were first discovered, named and developed by Chinese ancestors.

The video also features several personalities defending China’s claims and calling the award made by the arbitration tribunal untenable. They include Wu Shicun, president of China’s National Institute for South China Sea Studies; John Ross, who used to be in charge of economic and business policy for London; and Masood Khalid, Pakistan’s ambassador to China, reported.

Broadcasts of the video came after the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague ruled on July 12 that China’s claims of sovereignty over most of the South China Sea have no legal basis and that Beijing had violated the Philippines’ sovereign rights by building artificial islands and preventing its fishing and oil exploration activities in the disputed waters.

The video says it is impossible for the Chinese government to accept the ruling and insists the best way to resolve the South China Sea disputes is through peaceful talks between Beijing and the other claimants.

Xinhua reported that the video, which is being played about 120 times a day, has attracted many eyeballs, with some Chinese tourists in the Big Apple saying that it is necessary to let the world know the truth regarding the issue.

Hundreds of millions of people come to Times Square every year as it is one of the most popular tourist spots in the world. 

What next? A Super Bowl half-time infomercial?

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