The US State Department has designated a Chinese government-funded Mandarin-language program as a foreign mission, expanding the scope of Chinese organizations operating in America that Washington regards as propaganda arms of Beijing, reported the South China Morning Post.
Confucius Institutes in the US (CIUS) – an organization managed by China’s Ministry of Education, and which finances its programs on American campuses – will need to register its personnel roster and property holdings with the State Department, a move authorized by the Foreign Missions Act of 1982 (FMA), David Stilwell, the assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific affairs, said on Thursday.
“We asked them to tell us what they’re doing here in the US, we’re not closing it. We’re simply designating them as what they are, as foreign missions,” Stilwell said.
The order only applies to the Washington-based umbrella organization, Confucius Institutes in the US. CIUS manages and funds programs on US campuses, which are not subject to the order.