University of Erlangen–Nuremberg has become the first German university to suspend cooperation with the China Scholarship Council (CSC). The university cited concerns about the potential risk of espionage by Chinese students as the reason for the decision.
The CSC is a Chinese government agency that is responsible for providing scholarships to Chinese students who want to study abroad. The agency has been accused of using its scholarships to control Chinese students who study abroad.
In 2022, a report by the German newspaper Die Zeit found that the CSC was requiring Chinese students who studied in Germany to sign agreements that prohibited them from criticizing the Chinese government or participating in political activities. The report also found that the CSC was requiring Chinese students to maintain contact with the Chinese embassy in Germany and to return to China after completing their studies.
The CSC has denied allegations that it has engaged in censorship and control. The agency said that its scholarships are designed to help Chinese students gain the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in the global economy.
The suspension of cooperation between University of Erlangen–Nuremberg and the CSC is a sign of the growing tensions between Germany and China. The two countries have been at odds over a number of issues, including trade, human rights, and the South China Sea. The suspension of cooperation is likely to have a significant impact on German-Chinese relations. The university is one of the most prestigious in Germany, and it is a major center for research and innovation.
Source: Deutsche Welle, July 29, 2023