A file picture of Chinese military personnel forming an honour guard outside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing earlier this month. Photo: Associated Press

China state-run paper denies US spy shot in government courtyard

Execution took place as Chinese authorities dismantled CIA spy networks on the mainland, according to The New York Times

A Chinese state-run newspaper has denied an overseas news report claiming that a US spy was shot dead in a government department courtyard, describing the story as “purely fabricated”.

The editorial in the Global Times, which is controlled by the official Communist Party paper the People’s Daily, went on to praise efforts to dismantle US spy operations in China.

The Chinese authorities killed or jailed at least a dozen people providing information to the CIA between 2010 and 2012, dismantling US spy efforts, The New York Times reported on Saturday.

The US newspaper added that one of the spies was shot in front of his colleagues at a government department.

The Global Times said in its editorial: “As for one source being shot in a government courtyard, that is a purely fabricated story, most likely a piece of American-style imagination based on ideology.”

The editorial said that if reports were true about the destruction of the spy network, it proved the effectiveness of China’s counter-espionage efforts and the US had nothing to be proud of if CIA spying operations on the mainland really had been crippled.

“It can be taken as a sweeping victory. Perhaps it means that even if the CIA makes efforts to rebuild its spy network in China, it could face the same result.
The Global Times commentary on the US report. Photo: Handout

“If this article is telling the truth, we would like to applaud China’s counter-espionage activities. Not only was the CIA’s spy network dismantled, but Washington had no idea what happened and which part of the spy network had gone wrong,” the paper said.

The article added that increased CIA espionage in China would only draw equal amounts of counter-intelligence.

“No matter how the Americans see it, international law will affirm that China’s counter-espionage activities are just and legal, while the CIA’s spying is illegitimate,” the article said.