Taiwanese Media Accidentally Report Non-Existing Chinese Military Invasion

The Chinese Television System (CTS), funded by the Taiwanese government, accidentally broadcast a ticker on Wednesday morning falsely stating that Chinese forces had launched a military invasion of New Taipei City, the Taipei Time reported Thursday.

Taiwanese public broadcaster CTS allowed false alerts intended for an upcoming disaster drill in New Taipei City to enter its text feed for a news ticker running at the bottom of its 7:00 a.m. newscast April 20. The text included alarming messages, such as, “Communist forces are hitting New Taipei City with guided missiles.”

“Navy vessel explodes, facilities, ships damaged at Taipei Port,” read another fake update.

« Arson and explosives placed by suspected special forces in Banqiao [train] Station, no casualties,” the CTS ticker added.

“The CTS chyron had also warned that the conflict with China was ‘in danger of erupting’ and that New Taipei officials had established a command and control center,” Newsweek reported Wednesday. “‘The Chinese Communists are preparing for war, [Taiwan] the president declares a state of emergency beginning at 8 a.m. on March 6,” reads the text.

CTS’ accidental broadcast of the false alerts prompted several New Taipei City residents to phone the local government and inquire about the messages on Wednesday. In response, CTS pinned the following statement to the top of its YouTube live stream later Wednesday: “The ticker content shown earlier was part of a disaster prevention video created by the New Taipei Fire Department . Today, due to incorrect settings, yesterday’s video content was inserted by mistake. Please don’t panic! We hereby clarify and apologize!”

CTS released a more detailed explanation of the incident later on April 20, writing:

We were commissioned by the New Taipei City Government to shoot a disaster drill video, with the scenario provided by the New Taipei City Fire Department. The news producer who recorded the video used a horizontal screen layout with tickers, which was done by changing the path to a text file link. However, the producer did not restore the file’s link path after finishing recording on Tuesday. [April 19]resulting in the error in the morning news program.

Taiwan’s National Communications Commission (NCC) opened an investigation into the CTS teletypewriter fiasco on April 20. The NCC suspects CTS may have violated Article 21 of Taiwan’s Radio and Television Law, which prohibits programs that “disturb public order or harm good social customs”. .”

“TV stations that violate the article face fines of NT$200,000 to 2 million (US$6,838 to US$68,378), with the minimum raised to NT$400,000 if deemed to be a major offence,” NCC officials said at a press conference on Wednesday.

Long-running political tension between Taipei and Beijing has increased in recent months, putting Taiwan on high alert for a possible act of military aggression by China. Beijing views Taiwan as Chinese territory and has repeatedly threatened to “reunify” the island nation – located off China’s southeast coast – with “the mainland” or China. In line with this bellicose stance, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) has stepped up aerial sorties penetrating Taiwan’s Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) in recent months. .


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