An Epic Eye Roll Enthralls China

An Epic Eye Roll Enthralls China”

As the reporter in red first parrots standard praise about China's Belt and Road initiative before dutifully spouting out her carefully rehearsed, but inane question, Liang becomes increasingly impatient with the seemingly endless question, before finally making an exasperated expression and rolling her eyes.

The incident took place in the "Ministers' Corridor", a fenced-off area from which reporters can ask questions of government ministers after the end of the NPC meetings.

The eye-rolling occurred on Tuesday during a long-winded question by American reporter Zhang Huijun from American Multimedia TV about how China could protect their assets overseas, the BBC reported.

But her question didn't appear to go down well with the woman standing next to her - journalist Liang Xiangyi from Chinese finance outlet Yicai. "May this be a lesson for her", as translated by WhatsonWeibo.

The session was being broadcast live on state TV, and within minutes clips and gifs were widely circulating on China's pre-eminent social media platform WeChat.

As did completely unverified claims that Ms Liang had been reprimanded by her company and had even been stripped of her press pass.

Before posing her question to the government official, Xiao Yaqing, Ms. Zhang had introduced herself as the operating director of American Multimedia Television U.S.A., a Los Angeles-based broadcaster that has had partnerships with Chinese state-run television in the past, according to its website.

Liang looked at Zhang as she started to speak, turning her head and giving a little sigh. The reaction of a fellow reporter, dressed in blue, summed up how many journalists, and viewers, were surely feeling, not only about the question but about the whole two-week set-piece event in general.

The clip also generated curiosity about AMTV, one of a growing number of foreign news organizations with links to Chinese state media.

Zhang pressed on with her "question", spinning it out with background on the 40th anniversary of China's opening up and reform, prompting to Liang to rest her chin on her fist and raise her eyebrows as she looked at Zhang again. On Ms. Liang's Weibo account - which quickly soared to 100,000 followers and kept climbing - supporters flooded her with jokes and comments of support.

Organisers sometimes give opportunities allocated for the foreign media to non-Chinese reporters from Chinese media outlets.

Searching for the women's names on Weibo brought up a message that said "according to relevant laws and policies, results for this search can't be shown".

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