BBC Chinese recently reported that the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) called for a cancellation or a renegotiation of the agreements between the Confucius Institute and around 100 U.S. universities. The AAUP expressed the belief that the agreements must abide by Western values. It suggested that the Confucius Institute “is a branch of the Chinese government” and “is allowed to ignore academic freedom.” AAUP was founded in 1915 to defend academic freedom. It currently has 47,000 members. The AAUP announcement urged the U.S. universities to stop cooperating with the Confucius Institute unless it undergoes major reform. The Confucius Institute is an organization funded by the Chinese Ministry of Education. By the end of 2013, it had established 440 institutes across 120 countries around the world. In May 2014, over 100 professors at the University of Chicago, including seven deans, jointly asked the university to discontinue its contract with the Confucius Institute, citing lack of freedom to discuss “sensitive issues” such as the Tiananmen Massacre and the issue of Tibet. The Confucius Institute also controls the hiring and training of its teachers.
Source: BBC Chinese, June 18, 2014