China slams media for 'ugly' photo of Olympic gold medalist Hou Zhihui

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    Chinese officials have launched a bizarre attack on western media outlets after accusing one of using an “ugly” photo of gold medalist Hou Zhihui in its Olympic coverage this week because of “politics and ideologies.” 

    Hou, 24, claimed China’s second gold medal of the Games on opening day after lifting a total of 210kg in the women’s 49kg event but the Chinese embassy in Sri Lanka took aim at Reuters news agency over the image it used to cover the story. 

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    “Among all the photos of the game, Reuters has chosen this one, which only shows how ugly they are,” the embassy said in a tweet. 

    “Don’t put politics and ideologies above sports, and call yourself an unbiased media organization. Shameless.” 

    The image depicted Hou straining during one of her lifts. The embassy shared another tweet with multiple articles from Reuters on the same day showing different athletes in different sports, claiming there was bias in its reporting of “white westerners.”

    “Same day, same Olympics, same Reuters, different faces. Maybe it’s because everything good in life comes easier for the white westerners? We said that these biased MSM are ugly. Never the athletes. They’re beautiful.” 

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    The tweet was met with harsh criticism on social media by users who accused the embassy of shaming its own athlete by using the term “ugly.” 

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    The embassy fired back, claiming that Hou “is definitely beautiful” but that there was a “bias and intentional choice” in the picture the news agency used. 

    Despite China’s disdain for the photo, Hou said after winning her medal that she simply wants to “enjoy the Games.” 

    “I just want to be myself, be all of myself,” she said, according to Yahoo Sports.

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