Chinese organisers have cancelled their invitation to a Taiwanese children's choir who were scheduled to perform at a festival in southern China's Guangdong province on 20 July. Reports suggest that the invitation was withdrawn as the group – comprising of children from the Paiwan indigenous tribe – had performed the Taiwanese national anthem at President Tsai Ing-wen's inauguration ceremony.
According to the island nation's official Central News Agency, the cancellation notice was sent by the organisers after a week of their performance at the inauguration ceremony of President Tsai, the country's first female head.
"Singing the national anthem at the presidential inauguration was a great honor for us, so we decided to go ahead with it, although someone had warned us of the possible consequences," Wu Sheng-ying, musical director of the choir, told CNA.
The choir's performance, where they infused native musical elements into the anthem, was highly praised by everyone and they are due to perform at a choir competition in Hungary in August for which Tsai has donated Taiwanese $500,000 (£11,000) for their travel expenses.
This is not the first time that China has called off such a tour, earlier as well the country has stalled several concerts and commercial activities scheduled by Taiwanese singer Chang Hui-mei.
In 2000, China banned all her concerts and performances within the country's territories after she sang the Taiwan's national anthem at the swearing in of Chen Shui-bian, the first president elected from Taiwan's pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party.