Donald Trump landed in Beijing on the afternoon of November 8 during his 12-day east Asian tour. He is also the first head of state to visit China since the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China concluded. This visit is an excellent opportunity for both countries to strengthen their cooperation and the whole world is looking forward to every news related to this meeting.
Though the tension in the Korean peninsula or bilateral ties between the world’s two largest economies are vital, the question that had been doing rounds was- “Will Donald Trump not Tweet during his stay in China?” When reporters asked the same question, a senior White House official said, “No. The president will Tweet whatever he wants. That’s his way of communicating directly with the American people. Why not?”, The Guardian reported.
China not only blocks Twitter but Facebook, Instagram, and Google (amongst many others). However, people with access to VPNs (Virtual Private Network) have been able to bypass social media restrictions despite the severe crackdown by the government.
According to, the director of the Digital and Cyberspace Policy Program with the Council on Foreign Relations- Adam Segal, Facebook and Twitter is allowed occasionally whenever the country hosts international summits. He also said that the Chinese government has made Twitter available to various high-level foreigners earlier and had signaled that if Trump wanted to Tweet, no one would stop him.
However, in the first eight hours since his landing, there was no Tweet from the US president but by the end of the day; he was in all praise for the Asian hospitality on his Twitter account. So far we have seen about seven Tweets and ten Instagram posts from his official presidential account. The Tweet with the Forbidden City pictures had received 12,000 shares and his Instagram post received 29,000 likes in the first 15 hours.
Twitter on an official statement said, “Our consumer service is censored and blocked in mainland China today. As a global platform, we are already engaged with advertisers, content providers, and influencers across Greater China to help them reach audiences around the world.” According to Tweetdeck, Trump’s Tweet from Beijing was from his iPhone whereas his tweets from Beijing were sent from a web browser.
Sources: The Guardian, Bloomberg
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