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22 May 2024

Pinoys accuse Chinese resto of racism


Filipinos and Vietnamese have reacted with a mixture of fury and amusement on social media, to reports that a restaurant in the Chinese capital of Beijing bars, along with dogs, citizens from Japan, the Philippines and Vietnam—countries that have territorial disputes with China.

“Blatant racism at Beijing restaurant,” Veronica Pedrosa, a Filipino journalist who is formerly news anchor at CNN International and BBC World, tweeted. “Who cares, they almost cook everything, including foetus and fingernails,” Facebook user Rey Garcia said in a comment thread on a news site.

A news item, datelined Hanoi and carried by the inquirer.net Wednesday night, said the a sign’s wording at Beijing Snacks Restaurant near the Forbidden City, a touristic area, is “inflammatory, as it recalls China’s colonial era, when British-owned establishments barred Chinese from entering”.

While many historical experts denied this existed, a Communist propaganda has for years inculcated in the minds of the Chinese that there was once a sign reading ‘No dogs and Chinese allowed’ hung outside a park in Shanghai during an occupation period.

The sign at Beijing Snacks that was still hanging on its glass wall on Wednesday, reads: “This shop does not receive the Japanese, the Philippines, the Vietnamese and dog[s].” Photographs of the signage have gone viral in online forums and were featured in the Philippine and Vietnamese media.

Raul Hernandez, spokesman of the Department of Foreign Affairs, in Manila, described the restaurant sign as a “private view” about the maritime dispute.

An AFP report said that the restaurant owner, name Wang, stressed that the controversial sign was his “own conduct”, as “[n]o officials have contacted me about it”.

Manila has brought before the United Nations China’s belligerent attitude towards the Philippines with regard to their territorial dispute in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea).

Vietnam also claims part of the Spratlys, the whole of which is being claimed by China, in the West Philippine Sea. Japan, on the other hand, has a separate territorial dispute with China over some islands in the East China Sea.

Other claimants to the allegedly oil- and mineral-rich Spratlys are Brunei, Malaysia and Taiwan.