The Chinese embassy in the UK has lashed out against a BBC Chinese story on the Taiwan Olympic team’s naming controversy.

BBC Chinese’s article over the Taiwanese Olympic team’s name. Photo: BBC screenshot.

The British broadcaster published a Chinese article that explained the history and variations of the Taiwanese Olympics team’s official name, “Chinese Taipei.” It examined the different terms used by media outlets in mainland China and in Japan.

Before settling down to its current official name in 1979, the story explained, Taiwan’s team had participated in the Olympic games under the names of “Republic of China,” “Formosa,” or “Taiwan” depending on the state of relations between the island and China at the time.

‘Only one China ‘

In response to a reporter’s question over the BBC’s article on Wednesday, a spokesperson from the Chinese embassy in London said: “China firmly opposes BBC Chinese’s continuous effort to sensationalise the question of the ‘China Taipei’ team at the Tokyo Olympics. [China] strongly urges these media to follow international consensus and professional conduct, to stop politicising sports, and to stop interference with the Tokyo Olympic games.”

Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen waves a Chinese Taipei flag at a flag presentation ceremony on July 12, 2021. Photo: Wang Yu Ching/Office of the President, Taiwan, via Flickr.

“There is only one China in this world. Taiwan is an inalienable part of China’s territory, and the People’s Republic of China is the only legal government to represent China,” the spokesperson said.

“This objective and unquestionable fact will not change, nor will it change the international consensus to maintain the ‘One China Principle,'” they said.