TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Taiwanese government on Thursday (Aug. 24) advised people planning to visit China to avoid inquiring about seven topics that could lead to spying accusations from the Chinese government.
The topics are youth unemployment rates, information about property acquired by developers, foreign exchange reserves, bond transactions, the COVID-19 death toll, personal background of politicians and government officials, and criticism of the Chinese Communist Party’s policies, according to the Mainland Affairs Council (MAC).
The list of topics comes following the revision of an anti-espionage law earlier this year that gives Chinese authorities greater ability to crack down on actions it deems as endangering national security. It was also released in response to China’s decision to no longer disclose soaring youth unemployment rates.
Asking about these issues could be seen as attempts to collect intelligence, MAC said.
MAC also suggested that Taiwanese citizens participating in events in China secure promises from host institutions that they will not face arbitrary detention or restrictions on movement, according to Liberty Times. People are advised to travel in groups so that when emergencies occur, others can immediately seek assistance from host organizations and the MAC or the Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF). The SEF is a semiofficial organization funded by the Taiwanese government.
Meanwhile, before traveling to China, Taiwanese should beware if their belongings, cellphones, or laptops contain content that could be deemed off limits by Chinese authorities. The devices could be confiscated or their data used as evidence to press charges.