China has been accused of weaponising disinformation over the recent pictures linking Taiwan's intelligence department boss to a Thailand visit.
The scuffle started when screenshots taken from a deactivated Twitter account claimed that Chen Ming, Taiwan’s National Security Bureau (NSB), went to Thailand with a strange lady.
The rumour has been reported as news in major domestic media, and social media pages have also spread it, sparking worries across the country.
Agency claims pictures may be digitally altered
However, in a defence, NSB said that the tweets had factual errors, adding that it could not confirm if its director truly visited Thailand.
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The intelligence agency also claimed that the pictures might have been digitally altered or they were old shots of the NSB boss.
An officer of the NBS who did not want his name mentioned over the matter's sensitivity also claimed that Chen, who once held the position of minister of the Mainland Affairs Council, could have been going to Thailand to exchange intelligence.
Speaking to Tibet Press, the officer said the rate at which the report spread may have been the handwork of China and the release may have been intended to demonstrate that China had access to photos taken by Thai customs.
The relationship between China and Thailand recently got sour due to the former's overbearing influence and dictatorial grandstanding.
Meanwhile, Taiwanese groups have begun a war against misinformation. Groups like Taiwan Fact Check Centre have issued warnings about a rise in misinformation intended to undermine members of the Tsai government.
Experts worry over China's economic strength as companies shift operation
Legit.ng earlier reported that despite its expanding influence and enviable human power, China has been stuck in what finance and economy experts have described as a "middle-income trap."
This was linked to different controversies in which the country is embroiled, including human rights violations and alleged military expansionism.
With a staggering 1.4million population, China boasts one of the most incredible economic success stories and cemented itself as one of the economic world powers. But there seems to be a steady dive in the run of the country's success lately in what has raised concern.