Donald Trump’s White House has become the target of mockery yet again after making an awkward diplomatic boo-boo on an official release at the G20 over the weekend. In a White House transcript of remarks made by Trump prior to his meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Hamburg, Xi is referred to as “President Xi of the Republic of China” by the Office of Press Secretary Sean Spicer.
Of course, Xi is, in fact, the President of the People’s Republic of China, while the Republic of China is what the government of Taiwan calls itself — a rather important distinction and something that social media users were quick to point out.
Come on guys.
The Republic of China is Taiwan. pic.twitter.com/ao2a3C7zX3
— Matthew Yglesias (@mattyglesias) July 8, 2017
Yeah. He's with The "People's Republic" of China. Everybody knows the "Republic" of China is led by Frederick Douglass https://t.co/MrSbPaDX6t
— Keith Olbermann (@KeithOlbermann) July 8, 2017
An official online version of the release now simply refers to Xi as: “President Xi of China.”
Meanwhile, Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong was also misidentified as the “President of Indonesia” on Trump’s official Instagram account, a gaffe that caused some to wonder if all Asian heads of state look the same to Trump’s White House.
The Republic of China blunder calls to mind another memorable one back in 2006 when US President George W. Bush greeted Chinese President Hu Jintao at the White House with the Chinese national anthem which was announced as being the “national anthem of the Republic of China.”
Meanwhile, the Trump’s official news source, Fox News, also made an embarrassing mistake of its own, showing off its unfamiliarity with Chinese surnames by referring to Xi as “Jinping.”
— Maggie Jordan: (@MaggieJordanACN) July 8, 2017
Fox News reporting on Trump's meeting today with President Jinping. pic.twitter.com/9Qi0PVXmOG
— Ely Ratner (@elyratner) July 9, 2017
A lack of understanding that it apparently shares with the Times of India.
— Times of India (@timesofindia) July 7, 2017
And the USA Today:
Secretary of State Tillerson and President Jinping agreed that China and the United States could cooperate more. https://t.co/oTn77f4V6W
— USA TODAY (@USATODAY) March 19, 2017
But, hey, at least nobody called him “President Eleven.”
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