Nana Ou-Yang doubles down on pro-mainland China comments: ‘I love my country’

Society & Culture

Nana Ou-Yang 欧阳娜娜, the teen Taiwanese artist who was nearly cancelled by Chinese internet users last week due to her perceived ambiguous position on Taiwan’s relationship with mainland China, has gone further to align herself with Beijing’s views on Taiwan.

On March 23, Chinese Movie Report 中国电影报道, a TV program that airs on the state broadcaster CCTV, released an interview clip with Ou-Yang, in which the 18-year-old stresses her love for mainland China and reiterates her political stance as an opponent of Taiwan’s independence.

In the nearly 5-minute long interview (in Chinese), Ou-Yang first shares her experience studying abroad, saying that since the first day she went to school overseas, she always introduced herself as a student from China. When asked when she started identifying herself as a Chinese, Ou-Yang said that she believed that “unification is good for everyone” since she was a child.

“As a young Chinese who was born after 2000 and studies overseas, I want to make my own small contribution to bring people together,” Ou-Yang said. “I hope everyone can share their views, make more effort to unite and make our country proud of us.”

Later in the interview, Ou-Yang reflected on her acting and music career, adding that her 2017 solo cello concert at the National Center for the Performing Arts in Beijing was a major achievement for her. “I was honored to perform there and it gave me a sense of belonging,” she said.

Towards the end of the interview, Ou-Yang expressed her wishes and congratulations to the People’s Republic of China (PRC) on the 70th anniversary of its founding this year. “I wish my country prosperity,” she said.

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The interview is part of an ongoing series created by the TV program, where popular millennial celebrities are invited to talk about how proud they are to be Chinese artists and their plans to leverage their influence to spread patriotism. Ou-Yang was the first Taiwanese artist to be featured in this series.

Over the weekend, the official Weibo account of the People’s Daily, the Chinese Communist Party’s main mouthpiece, shared the interview video with a comment (in Chinese) praising Ou-Yang’s courage to clarify her political position. “As a young Taiwanese born after 2000, her brave expression of her favor of the One China Policy deserves recognition. Political long-standing conflicts between Taiwan and mainland China should not be passed on from generation to generation,” the post reads.

Prior to the interview, Ou-Yang and her agency released multiple statements to dismiss rumors that she was a secret supporter of Taiwanese independence. Her first statement, published on Weibo, didn’t sit well with many internet users who questioned that she was a “two-faced” artist who only made anti-independence remarks on social media platforms used by people from mainland China. In response to the criticism, Ou-Yang later posted a statement on Facebook and Instagram, which triggered a wave of intense condemnation from pro-independence people in Taiwan, who denounced her as a traitor.