Ting Wen-yin, 22, was proud to represent Taiwan for the Miss Earth beauty pageant. So when the pageant’s organizers told her she could not wear a sash bearing the words “Taiwan ROC” and instead tried to force her to wear a sash bearing “Chinese Taipei,” she refused. In response the organizers barred her from appearing on stage and prevented photographers from taking her picture. “I told them 30,000 times that Taiwan is Taiwan,” wrote Ting Wen-yin on Facebook. “I was born in Taiwan, my sash reads Taiwan, I represent Taiwan.” Mainland China does not recognize Taiwan as a state, and in 1979, China and Taiwan agreed that Taiwan could enter international games such as the Olympics so long as they registered as “Chinese Taipei.” It is not immediately clear why the beauty pageant would need to pander to Chinese sensitivities in this matter, but this isn’t the first time China’s used its weight to bully a beauty contestant. Just last week Anastasia Lin, the winner of Miss Canada, said she had not received an invitation to go to China for the Miss World competition in December. Lin’s crime appears to be her support of the Falun Gong, a spiritual group banned in China.
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