China's ambassador to Zambia released a stern statement this week, seeking to battle misinformation that he said was harming China's reputation in Africa. "This is completely a malicious slandering and vilification, which is absolutely unacceptable to us," according to Yang Youming's statement, which was widely reported in Chinese state media.
The misinformation in question? That China was taking dead bodies, marinating them, putting them in cans and then selling them in African supermarkets.
Chinese state media accused tabloids in Zambia of spreading the rumors, stating that "people with ulterior motives were attempting to destroy the long-standing partnership between Zambia and China." A number of blogs and other publications appeared to have picked up the stories from Facebook.