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Vietnamese netizens strike Netflix’s film as it uses map acknowledging China's illegal "nine-dash line"

15:21 | 25/08/2020

The Chinese film “Put your head on my shoulder” on Netflix has provoked anger among Vietnamese netizens as it includes a map showing China's illegal claims over the South China Sea or Bien Don Sea, also known as the so-called "nine-dash line".

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vietnamese netizens strike netflixs film as it uses map acknowledging chinas illegal nine dash line
The image of “nine-dash line” in the movie Photo: Thanh Nien

Specifically, at 34:44 seconds of the 9th episode appears a map of China with the “nine-dash line” representing its illegal claims in Bien Dong Sea, internationally known as the South China Sea, according to Thanh Nien.

As of this morning, August 25, the image still appears in episode 9 of this movie. It is also currently shown on some Vietnamese pirated movies websites.

Previously, in May, the movie “Madam Secretary” on Netflix produced by CBS sparked the ire among Vietnamese as it annotated the ancient town of Hoi An (Quang Nam, Vietnam) into Fuling, a district in southwest China.

The Quang Nam’s Department of Information and Communications then submitted a document to the Ministry of Information and Communications and the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism seeking ways to handle the issues, in which proposing companies that own the copyright of the TV series should not broadcast it in Vietnam until the issue is resolved.

The incorrect annotation is an offense to the locals’ pride in the historical and cultural values of Hoi An and can “seriously affect” Vietnam’s tourism promotion.

On July 20, the Department of Radio, Television, and Electronic Information sent a document to Netflix requesting the company to comply with Vietnamese law as broadcasting television services in the country.

"The scene in question is from a licensed title called Madam Secretary, which aired in 2014 and is a work of fiction," Netflix said in a statement from its media agency in Vietnam.

vietnamese netizens strike netflixs film as it uses map acknowledging chinas illegal nine dash line
The shot features the ancient town of Hoi An, Vietnam but it is annotated into Fuling in China Photo: VNExpress

In the document, the department points out the unsuitable contents of Netflix’s films such as distorting Vietnam’s waters sovereignty as well as Vietnam’s war history (in Vietnam War movie).

Vietnam in 2019 also ordered theatres to pull the movie Abominable over depictions in the film of China's "nine-dash line" in the East Sea that violates Vietnam’s waters sovereignty.

DreamWorks’ animated feature, ‘Abominable’, also has been banned in Malaysia and the Philippines.

The removal of the movie from Vietnamese cinemas follows a similar incident with "Operation Red Sea", a Chinese movie that was banned in 2018 from being shown in Vietnam.

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Malie Nguyen