German website deletes content of listing Taiwan as country

By Sun Haoran and Liu Xuanzun Source:Global Times Published: 2019/4/23 21:28:41

Worlddata.info, a private German website on statistics, removed its description of Taiwan as an "independent country" Monday night after the Global Times sent an inquiry about its descriptions.

"We will no longer write that Taiwan is independent. Since Taiwan has never formally declared its independence, I have now removed the year of alleged independence and explained this fact in the explanatory text," a representative of the website told the Global Times via email. 

Laenderdaten.info or Worlddata.info is a Germany-based private portal on statistics such as economic data and population figures, and it has three versions in German, English, and Spanish. 

The website previously described that the island of Taiwan "had been independent (which was mistakenly spelled as "indepedant") since 1945," and the "capital city" was "Taipei." 

It still listed the Hong Kong and Macao Special Administrative Regions (SARs) and Taiwan region as separate from China under the "East Asia" column on its web page on Tuesday. 

The website, however, explained that the "Hong Kong and Macao SARs" are "two partially-administered territories of China," and it separately listed those two regions because they have special status, including their own legislation and currency. 

The website's latest move came after several media outlets in Taiwan had reported Worlddata's misinformation that had "split China."

"Overseas website recognizes Taiwan's independence since 1945 and Taiwan's capital as Taipei," reported Taiwan-based SET News on Saturday.

However, many net users in Taiwan region felt ashamed by such media reports. "A random website that nobody cares about would be able to get those media high," one netizen said in the comment section of the Liberty Times, another pro-independent media outlet in Taiwan.  

This is not the first time that foreign companies or portals have separated Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao from China on their websites. 

Delta Airlines apologized on January 12, 2018 for listing Tibet and Taiwan as "independent countries" on its website and promised to take immediate measures to correct the mistakes.


Newspaper headline: German website deletes ‘independent’ Taiwan description


Posted in: SOCIETY,CHINA FOCUS

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