The Walt Disney Company has removed an episode of US animate series. The Simpsons containing a reference to “forced labour camps” in China from its video streaming service in Hong Kong. It emerge on Monday (06.02.2023).
The second episode of the latest season, Angry Lisa, which first aired in October 2022. Is not available on the US company’s Disney Plus digital service in the former British colony, according to EFE news agency.
In it, a scene shows the matriarch of the series, Marge Simpson. In a virtual cycling class with an instructor in front of images of the Great Wall of China.
Disney+ pulls Simpsons episode in Hong Kong over criticism of China
During the sequence, the instructor exclaims: “Behold the wonders of China. Bitcoin mines and forced labour camps where children make smartphones”.
In recent years, the Chinese government has received allegations from Western countries and international organisations of human rights abuses in the north-western region of Xinjiang, including the establishment of forced labour camps for Uighurs and other mainly Muslim minorities.
The Simpsons again
This is the second time an episode of the series, produced by Disney-owned 20th Television Animation, has been omitted from the streaming platform in the former British colony.
Disney+ pulls Simpsons episode in Hong Kong over criticism of China A previous episode – which alluded to the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre – was removed from the service in 2021. In that episode, which first aired in 2005, the popular family’s visit to Tiananmen Square featured a large sign that read: “Nothing happened here in 1989. In it, Homer Simpson calls former Chinese leader Mao Zedong “a little angel who caused the deaths of millions of people”.
The government claimed that the regulation targeted content that “endorses, supports, glorifies, glorifies, encourages and incites activities that may endanger national security”.
Some voices have denounce a rapid erosion of the freedoms of the Hong Kong population. Since Beijing’s imposition in June 2020 of the territory’s National Security Law. Which provides for sentences of up to life imprisonment for cases of secession. Terrorism or collusion with foreign forces, among others.
The law was Beijing’s response to the massive anti-government protests that took to the streets. The former British colony during the second half of 2019.