China’s ICT regulator boss pays ‘friendly’ visit to Facebook’s US HQ
Chinese govt site shows Lu Wei taking undated tours of Facebook, Apple, Amazon
The Chinese minister responsible for policing the Internet was yesterday revealed to have recently visited the headquarters of Facebook, Apple and Amazon, according to a Chinese government website.
According to a report from Reuters, the date of the visit was not disclosed, but photos and text on the government's website told the story of a friendly meeting between Lu Wei, minister of China's Cyberspace Administration, and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, where the pair greeted each other in Mandarin.
Other pictures on the site showed Lu with Apple's Tim Cook and Amazon's Jeff Bezos.
According to Facebook's company news site, the social media giant had 1.35bn monthly active users as of 30 September, 2014, but Facebook is still officially blocked in China, cutting Zuckerberg off from around 600m Internet users.
Lu has defended China's strict Internet controls since stepping into his role last year, saying the policies were vital for the stability of the state.
"China has always been very hospitable, but we can choose who enters our house," he said in October. "We could not allow any companies to enter China and make money while hurting the country."
He added: "I didn't say Facebook could not enter China, but nor did I say that it could."