Concerns have been raised that the Chinese Communist Party will interfere in Taiwan’s presidential election to be held in January next year. The Taiwanese government is considering a full ban on the Chinese video sharing platform ‘TikTok’, which is also widely used by Taiwanese, because it can be used to manipulate public opinion.
According to the Taipei Times on the 19th, the previous day, Taiwan National Security Council (NSC) secretary general Kuri-Hsiung said in a seminar that “the Chinese Communist Party is expanding its ‘cognitive warfare’ targeting Taiwan.” Congress) will try to interfere in the election,” he said. ‘Cognitive warfare’ is a method of incapacitating the enemy by instigating antipathy against the government with fake news, etc., and disturbing public sentiment by lowering the morale of civilians and the military.
Taiwan will hold both a presidential election and a legislative council election in January next year. Current President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文), a member of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), has already succeeded in re-election, so it is impossible to run for the next presidential election. China wants a pro-China figure to be elected president rather than a person with a strong tendency toward independence like President Tsai. If this happens, the discussion on unification can speed up, and in the process, there is a possibility that the US-China confrontation over Taiwan will be resolved at once.
In the midst of this, it is known that the Taiwanese government is considering banning TikTok in the private sector as it can be mobilized to manipulate public opinion in Taiwan ahead of the presidential election. In particular, it was emphasized that fake news about Taiwan’s Vice President and Democratic Progressive Party President Lai Ching-de, who has registered as the next presidential candidate of the ruling party, is increasing on TikTok.
Taiwanese media Lianhebo reported on the same day that Taiwan’s National Security Agency proposed to expand the ban on TikTok to the private sector to block fake news ahead of the presidential election in January next year. Previously, Taiwan’s Ministry of Digital Development banned the use of TikTok in the public sector in December of last year on the grounds that it harmed national information and communication security. Lian Hebo added, “Taiwan’s Ministry of Digital Development, China’s main body, the Continental Commission, and national security ministries and other related ministries are gathering to discuss the issue.”
Mark Jones is a world traveler and journalist for News Rebeat. With a curious mind and a love of adventure, Mark brings a unique perspective to the latest global events and provides in-depth and thought-provoking coverage of the world at large.