onsdag 11. januar 2023

Zhao Lijian: China reassigns combative ‘Wolf Warrior’ diplomat

A controversial Chinese diplomat who epitomised China's "Wolf Warrior" approach to diplomacy has been moved to a less prominent post. Ex-foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian is now deputy head of the Department of Boundary and Ocean Affairs. He will help manage China's maritime and land boundaries. It is unclear when he took up his new role.

A high profile figure, Mr Zhao often hosted the ministry's media briefings. The reason for his unexpected transfer is unclear. He was considered the leading light of "Wolf Warrior" diplomacy, defined by its confrontational, combative approach, a stark contrast to the previously restrained brand of Chinese diplomacy. It is named after the highly popular, often jingoistic, movie franchise about the adventures of a Chinese special forces soldier.

In three years as foreign ministry spokesman Mr Zhao often courted controversy with his tweets. In 2020, Mr Zhao suggested that the coronavirus which causes Covid was manufactured by the US military and brought to China.