Monday, October 25, 2021
“Influence of China”
Xi Jinping’s biography reading canceled
The authors of a biography on Chinese President Xi wish to present their book at an online event, in cooperation between two Confucius institutes and German universities. But the reading is canceled. One of the authors talks about the influence of China.
The rejection of a planned reading of a biography published in Germany on Chinese head of state Xi Jinping is drawing criticism. Adrian Geiges, one of the authors of the book, told the German news agency that he was sure the reading had been canceled due to Chinese influence. The online event was scheduled for Wednesday in parallel at the Leibniz Confucius Institute in Hanover and the Confucius Institute at the University of Duisburg-Essen, a spokeswoman for Piper Verlag said.
One of the three directors of the Confucius Institute at the University of Duisburg-Essen, Markus Taube, said he was “surprised and shocked” by the refusal at the dpa’s request. “Our cooperation university in Wuhan kindly showed us that they don’t think it’s a good thing if we organize the event. We can’t understand it in the form,” Taube said. “This is the first time we’ve seen this at the Confucius Institute.”
The Confucius Institute in Hanover could not be reached for a statement at first. The publisher Piper, with whom the book appears, made in a message “Chinese pressure” responsible for the short-term cancellation. “In Hanover, Tongji University of Shanghai, which manages the institute with Leibniz University, intervened. In Duisburg, the Chinese Consul General in Dsseldorf, Feng Haiyang, intervened personally to prevent the event,” he said. he continued.
Critic of Leibniz University of Hanover
According to Geiges, the two Confucius Institutes told him about China’s influence. Many parties and politicians in Lower Saxony and North Rhine-Westphalia have clearly criticized the approach, including Lower Saxony Science Minister Bjrn Thmler of the CDU.
The author of the book “Xi Jinping – the most powerful man in the world” is also the editor of “Welt” Stefan Aust. According to the publisher, the biography was published on July 1 of this year. According to the Confucius Institute in Hanover, Confucius Institutes are official cultural and educational institutions funded by a subdivision of the Chinese Ministry of Education. Thus, there are around 550 institutes in the world, and around 20 are based in Germany. Critics of the institutes see an influence of the Chinese state and the Chinese Communist Party on the institutions.
From Leibniz University of Hanover it was said earlier this week that the rejection was “unacceptable, strange and incomprehensible” to university management. The university management will quickly seek to meet with the board of the cooperation partner and consider possible further cooperation. The university invited the two authors and the publisher to read at the university. The invitation basically continues, it was also said of NRW.
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