China Refuses to Apologize Over Gruesome Australia Soldier Post
Story Code : 901068
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Arden said her government had conveyed its concern about the post to Beijing.
“New Zealand has registered directly with Chinese authorities our concern over the use of that image,” Arden told reporters on Tuesday.
“It was an un-factual post, and of course that would concern us. So that is something we have raised directly in the manner that New Zealand does when we have such concerns.”
The computer-generated image was posted on Monday by Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Zhao Lijian and includes the caption “Don’t be afraid, we are coming to bring you peace.”
It appeared to be a response to the outcome of a recent inquiry in Australia, which found evidence its special forces had murdered 39 civilians and prisoners in Afghanistan. Australia has apologized to Afghanistan over the killings, which are now the subject of a criminal investigation.
“Shocked by murder of Afghan civilians & prisoners by Australian soldiers. We strongly condemn such acts, &call for holding them accountable,” Zhao tweeted alongside the image.
Despite widespread global criticism, China has refused to apologize and Zhao later pinned the image to the top of his verified Twitter profile, where it has 38,700 likes and 6,655 retweets despite a “sensitive content” warning from Twitter.
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has demanded an apology for the post, which he called “repugnant”.
However, China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Hua Chunying on Monday said that rather demand an apology for the post, Australia should be “ashamed”.